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October 15, 1904


JAMA. 1904;XLIII(16):1147-1148. doi:10.1001/jama.1904.02500160049004

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In view of the fact that the birth rate of New South Wales was apparently steadily declining, a royal commission was appointed to investigate the causes. This commission consisted of thirteen members, six of whom were physicians, with Dr. Charles Kinnaird Mackellar as president.

The first volume of the report of this commission has just been received. It contains the general considerations and conclusions and the testimony of the statistical authorities. The special medical testimony of physicians will appear in the forthcoming second volume. The commission found that the decline of the birth rate is a very serious fact in New South Wales, and concluded that the diminution of fertility and fecundity in recent years is due to the deliberate prevention of conception and the destruction of embryonic life and the pathologic consequences following on the means used and the practices involved therein. There is no evidence of any increase

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