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November 9, 1912


Author Affiliations

Director of the Boston Dispensary BOSTON

JAMA. 1912;LIX(19):1689-1692. doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04270110103011

According to the census of 1910 the three cities of New York, Chicago and Boston have a combined population of 7,622,751. It was recently estimated that 45 per cent, of the people in Chicago were receiving dispensary aid; in Boston and New York the estimates indicate that the proportion is not less than one-third. In these three cities the out-patient departments and reputable dispensaries are providing medical service for fully 2,500,000 people and are expending annually at least $1,500,000. In the country as a whole, in the treatment of patients, millions of dollars are thus spent. Has $100 been spent in studying the results of the treatment, in testing methods, and in framing standards by which to estimate achievements in relation to expense?

OUT-PATIENT EFFICIENCY TESTS  The general method of an efficiency test is to investigate work done in relation to effort expended; or, in other words, to compare results