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March 6, 1991

US (Officially) Honors Physicians With First 'National Doctors' Day'

JAMA. 1991;265(9):1069. doi:10.1001/jama.1991.03460090017005

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MEDICAL SOCIETY auxiliaries throughout the country are busy with a multitude of plans for observing the first "National Doctors' Day" on March 30.

This national observance is authorized by Congress and the President. In signing the proclamation, President George Bush noted that the March 30 special day honors physicians for what he and Congress call their "invaluable contributions" to the welfare of the nation.

Actually, Doctors' Day began 58 years ago when Eudora B. Almond of the Barrow County (Ga) Medical Society Auxiliary suggested that her auxiliary set aside March 30 to recognize the contributions of local physicians. March 30 was selected because it was on that day in 1842 that Crawford W. Long, MD, a Georgian, became the first physician to use ether anesthesia in surgery.

Well Received  The Barrow County auxiliary immediately approved the suggestion. Members agreed that this could be an "observance demanding some act of kindness,