HC Deb 06 August 1874 vol 221 cc1406-7

asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland, If the Local Government Board, Ireland, received any report from the medical or other officers of the Kilmainham Hospital, Dublin, respecting the recent outbreak of typhoid fever in that institution; and, if not, will he, as President of the Board, cause an inquiry to be instituted, and a report to be made, as to the number of cases of typhoid fever that occurred in the hospital this year, the class of residences in which they occurred, the opinion of the medical officer, Dr. Carte, and of the medical gentlemen who were consulted as to the immediate cause of the outbreak, and place such report upon the Table of this House for the information of the sanitary authorities of the kingdom; and if, having regard to the fact that hygiene is not made a necessary part of the education of medical officers licensed for the Civil Service, the Local Government Board intends to adopt any means of en- suring that all medical officers hereafter to be appointed medical officers of dispensaries, and as such, sanitary officers of their dispensary districts, shall produce satisfactory evidence of their knowledge of hygiene as a requisite qualification for such appointment?


Sir, I have communicated by telegraph with Dublin, and find that the Local Government Board have no official relations with Kilmainham Hospital or with Dr. Carte, the medical officer, the hospital being under the War Department in Ireland. I understand, however, that the water supply of that establishment was not very good, and that there has been an outbreak of typhoid fever there. I am further given to understand that in consequence of this outbreak, provision was made to obtain a supply from the Vartry River. I believe that the works necessary are at present proceeding. There is no special hygienic qualification required for medical dispensary officers in Ireland, but all such officers are either "physicians and surgeons" or "surgeons and apothecaries," and must have been educated and examined in subjects which relate to what is called "hygiene," and as the legislation of the present Session has imposed important sanitary duties on these officers, this branch of medical knowledge will doubtless receive from them more careful attention than they may have hitherto bestowed upon it.