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April 14, 1956


JAMA. 1956;160(15):1320. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.02960500050013

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Some years ago Vice-President Marshall attracted a great deal of attention with a facetious remark to the effect that what this country needed was a good five-cent cigar. I would like to attract a little attention to the serious statement that what everyone in this country needs is a good personal health log. By that I mean a suitable booklet in the permanent possession of everyone, in which would be recorded some of the important aspects of his health record, encompassing items from his family history, and data on such things as his vaccinations and inoculations, his diseases and operations, his blood pressure, blood cell counts, and similar laboratory findings. It would be for him, and all of his contacts with hospitals and physicians, somewhat comparable to a permanent passport for travelers. Upon consulting a physician or entering a hospital, he would submit his health log. This would save considerable

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