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October 23, 1915

Rightly Objects to "Guards"

JAMA. 1915;LXV(17):1479-1480. doi:10.1001/jama.1915.02580170067026

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To the Editor:  —When I saw in a daily paper the statement that the "guards" at the Springfield State Hospital, Sykesville, Md., had asked an opportunity to form an organization for military drill, I was inclined to make another attempt to dissuade newspaper writers from using the phraseology of medieval times in the care of the insane. But the constant use of the terms "keepers," "guard," "cell," "maniac" and the like, in reference to hospitals for the insane has discouraged me. When, however, a medical journal prints information from Maryland, presumably furnished by a medical man, in which the word "guard" is used, a term alike offensive to patients and friends of patients in hospitals, and to those who have labored for real hospital methods in our institutions for the insane, a feeling of discouragement if not something worse results.

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