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September 6, 1965

Mortality From Tuberculosis 1890-1960

Author Affiliations

Champaign, Ill

Seattle, Wash

JAMA. 1965;193(10):854. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090100100045

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To the Editor:—  T.C. Doege (JAMA192:1045-1048 [June 21] 1965) analyzed tuberculosis mortality in the United States, 1900 to 1960. He may have wanted to revitalize the "fight" against tuberculosis. Its withering mortality commands fewer private and public monies, while sanatoria are being turned into oldage asylums.Doege's advice is as pure as being against sin and for motherhood. We brought it down that far; let us now use all our social, economic, and medical resources and we shall soon eradicate tuberculosis.Effective drugs have been available for two decades; some isolation has been practiced for five. So far, however, nothing has had any influence on demographic statistics. National mortality from tuberculosis, in this country as well as abroad, has decreased more and more slowly, in inverse proportion to the effectiveness of therapy and extent of isolation. The slowing down is unrelated to the fight; we simply have not

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