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April 10, 1909

General Practitioners and Simple Refraction

JAMA. 1909;LII(15):1195. doi:10.1001/jama.1909.02540410043013

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To the Editor:  —There may have been some excuse in times past for the public's resorting to the old time spectacle vendor to "get glasses fitted"—at any rate for the larger part of the public, which is unable to pay high professional fees in addition to the expense of costly glasses. Now, however, that the optician has arrogated to himself a would-be professional status, accompanied, of course, with a more or less commensurate fee, the question insistently suggests itself: Should not the general practitioner be able to recognize and manage cases of simple refraction? The answer indisputably must be "yes," for various reasons.First: The main reason for equipping family physicians with a working knowledge of simple refraction is that they may be able to do the medical practice now in the hands of opticians. While complicated refractive cases will often exceed the limitations of a family physician, no medical

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