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Article
December 23, 1899

HOW SHALL WE CONTROL VARIOLA?

JAMA. 1899;XXXIII(26):1590-1593. doi:10.1001/jama.1899.92450780022001h
Abstract

A pebble in the streamlet scant Has changed the course of many a river.

Vigorous sanitation applied at the right time and in the right way will always prevent an epidemic of smallpox. No acute infectious disease is so easily controlled, because: 1. It manifests itself externally and should rarely be mistaker for any other disease; 2, it is greatly dreaded, and hence people are as a rule careful to avoid it; 3, its germs are easily destroyed; 4, we have in vaccination an absolutely certain protection. The last statement may be disputed, but the exceptions are so very rare that I think better to ignore them.

My experience as a sanitary officer has brought to light a very great amount of prejudice against vaccination. This is largely based on the densest ignorance, but not a small part of it is due to the many bad results of careless vaccination—results

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