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March 26, 1938


Author Affiliations


From the New York Hospital and Department of Medicine, Cornell University Medical College.

JAMA. 1938;110(13):949-951. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790130009004

Before the medical requirements of a hospital pharmacy are considered, it is important to have a clear understanding of the function of hospitals. It is generally recognized that a hospital has four primary purposes:

  1. The diagnosis of disease.

  2. The treatment of the patient.

  3. The teaching of doctors, nurses and medical students.

  4. 4. Research.

DIAGNOSIS OF DISEASE  As regards the diagnosis of disease, the clinician and the diagnostic laboratories are alone concerned, but as regards the other three functions of the hospital the pharmacy often has an important role. It is my plan to discuss the relationship of the pharmacy to these three important purposes of the hospital.

TREATMENT OF THE PATIENT  As regards the first of these, namely, the treatment of the patient, the role of the pharmacy is distinctly important. Therapeutic results depend in large measure on the pharmacy's dispensing exactly what is ordered. The physician

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