Page images
PDF
EPUB

we fall down most miserably is in preservation and use of our human resources. Surely the basic need of our human resources is health. Health is not possible without the necessary facilities.

Gentlemen, we urge that this first step be taken for the preservation, the conservation, and for meeting the basic need, that of health of our greatest resource—our human resources.

STATEMENT OF HON. WALTER B. HUBER, MEMBER OF CONGRESS

FROM THE STATE OF OHIO

Mr. HUBER. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, it is very encouraging to me to know that your committee is giving consideration to H. Ř. 5628 and S. 191. Bills to amend the Public Health Service Act and authorize grants to the States for surveying their hospital needs and for planning construction of additional facilities and authorizing grants by the Federal Government to assist in such construction. This legislation if enacted will be of tremendous value to the people of all of the States of the Union. It is impossible in many instances, no matter how dire the need, for States and local communities to raise the necessary funds and provide ample hospital and public health facilities. Many communities have been most forward looking in this behalf and have raised large sums of money with which to make contributions for the erection of additional facilities to take care of the needs of their citizens.

Unfortunately, due to rising construction costs, increases in the prices of hospital equipment, and other expanding prices, the funds raised locally ofttimes are not sufficient to pay for the kinds of hospitals needed in certain localities.

I am mindful of the efforts of the citizens of Barberton. This is a large industrial community in Summit County, Ohio. It has an antiquated, outmoded, small hospital built many years ago in what is now a noisy, congested business area of the city, and its citizens some months ago in a widespread community effort in which industry, the merchants, unions, churches, clubs, and institutions of all kinds wholeheartedly participated, raised approximately $432,000 through local contributions for a new hospital, which is so badly needed by the community. In addition, it also owns, free and clear of all encumbrances, the present Barberton citizens' 50-bed hospital, together with the parcel of land on which the new hospital and health center is to be erected, so that it has available through its own efforts assets in excess of $500,000. It will not be possible to raise further funds locally, and it is my hope and belief that through the enactment of H. R. 5628 and S. 191, or a substitute measure upon which the two Houses of Congress can agree, Barberton may have an opportunity to have the funds raised by such united community effort and participation, matched with Federal funds, so that a hospital and health center of proper size, convenience, and facilities may be erected in what is one of the most enterprising and forward-looking industrial cities in northeastern Ohio.

CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES,

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,

Washington, D. C., March 18, 1946. Hon. J. PEROY PRIEST, Chairman, Sub-Committee on Public Health, Committee on Interstate & Foreign Commerce,

House of Representatives, Washington, D. O. MY DEAR COLLEAGUE: I am greatly interested in bill S. 191, dealing with the construction of hospitals.

I have received two communications, one from the city of Pontiac and the other from the South Oakland Hospital Authority, Royal Oak, Mich., in regard to the above-mentioned bill.

I am personally familiar with conditions existing in Oakland County, Mich., which is my home county, and its need for increased hospital facilities.

These two letters bear directly on the subject under consideration by your subcommittee and I therefore request that these communications, herewith enclosed, be made a part of the records of the hearings of your subcommittee. I thank you in advance for your attention to this matter. Sincerely,

GEORGE A. DONDERO, M. C.

CITY OF PONTIAC, Mich.,

March 15, 1946. Hon. GEORGE A. DONDERO,

House Office Building, Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. DONDERO: I am informed that hearings are being held on Senate bill #191 to provide grants for planning and construction of hospitals.

The city of Pontiac is in serious need for aid in constructing an addition to our existing municipal hospital, and in the south end of Oakland County there is need for additional hospital facilities.

We would like to.enlist your aid in presentation of our needs before a subcommittee of the House Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee, under the chairmanship of Representative J. Percy Priest of Tennessee.

Pontiac wishes to add 125 beds to the existing hospital, and has had competent surveys made of our needs which are becoming increasingly urgent. Yours very truly,

GEORGE E. BEAN, City Manager.

SOUTH OAKLAND HOSPITAL AUTHORITY,

Royal Oak, Mich., March 14, 1946. Hon. GEORGE A. DONDERO,

House Office Building, Washington, D. O. HON. SIR: We have received word from the Washington office of the Council of State Governments that hearings have begun in the House on S. 191, the bill passed sometime ago by the Senate to provide grants for planning and construction of hospitals.

We respectfully submit to you for presentation to the Committee in the House now conducting hearings on this bill, a statement from the South Oakland Hospital Authority which earnestly desires the passage of this bill.

Under the auspices of a group of civic-minded business and professional men representing 10 cities and townships of the southern part of Oakland County, Mich., the South Oakland Hospital Authority was organized for the purpose of building a 300-bed hospital. The interested communities represent approximately 150,000 people and are urgently in need of additional hospital faciliites; since, at the present time, only 60 beds exist in the entire area, and it is necessary for these residents to travel to the hospitals within the city of Detroit. Strenuour efforts to build the hospital have already begun, but since there is no Federal aid available for assistance in such a worthy enterprise at the present time, there is doubt that the hospital can successfully be developed without the passage of what is now known as S. 191 with the resultant aid to accrue therefrom.

The public need, together with the requirements for increased Veterans' facilities, are impelling considerations in support of the passage of the bill. Any effort in which you may assist us with the House Committee will be a great service to the community. Yours very truly,

SOUTH OAKLAND HOSPITAL AUTHORITY,

H. LLOYD CLAWSON, Chairman. 85131-46--13

[ocr errors]

CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES,

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,

Washington, D. C., March 14, 1946. Hon. J. PERCY PRIEST, Chairman, Public Health Subcommittee,

House of Representatives, Washington 25, D. C. MY DEAR COLLEAGUE: I would appreciate it very much if you would record me in your hearings as strongly favoring and urging the favorable report and the enactment of the Federal-aid hospital bill, S. 191.

I know of several instances in my own district where hospital facilities are urgently required and cannot be provided without the assistance contemplated by this measure. I am sure that many other sections of the country are in a similar position with respect to hospital facilities and I hope that you will press this measure, as rapidly as possible, so that it may be presented to the House in the near future. In my opinion it is sound and vitally needed legislation.

With thanks for your consideration of these views, and with usual good wishes, I am Sincerely yours,

PHILIP J. PHILBIN.

[ocr errors]

CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES,

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,

Washington, D. C., March 16, 1940. Hon. J. PERCY PRIEST, Chairman, Subcommittee on Public Health,

Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee, 1322 House Office Bldg. Subject: S. 191.

MY DEAR MR. PRIEST: I am not familiar with the possible future action of your committee in reporting to the House, probably in some amended form, S. 191 nor, of course, can I predict in what final form it may be offered to us for vote and, therefore, I am not in a position to commit myself as to how I shall vote when the bill finally comes before us for disposition,

I do feel, however, that there is very definite need for Federal help in the form of grants-in-aid to States or municipalities or to quasi-public bodies who desire to build public hospitals. I have in mind, for instance, my home town of Rogers City, Mich.- :-a community of about 4,500 people—wherein no public hospital ever existed. As a matter of fact, there is no hospital in my home county nor in the adjoining county of Montmorency. Our population is small, entirely rural, and our nearest public hospital facilities are approximately 40 miles away, namely, in Alpena and Cheboygan-cities of approximately 12,000 and 6,000 population, respectively.

The only hospital facilities we have had in the 35 years I have lived in Rogers City are those provided by one individual physician, with his wife serving as his chief nurse, and comprising approximately six beds. I am told that that has now been, or is in the process of being, closed up.

Recently there was formed in my home town the Rogers City Hospital Board, composed of three ministers of various denominations, the commander of the local American Legion post, and a civic-minded lady. They are making plans for the erection of a 25-bed hospital in Rogers City to be financed by locally solicited funds, by a minor amount of State aid, for the planning only, and by Federal aid if same is made available to them. I have personally offered to donate a site for the hospital which bears considerable value as real estate.

I believe that your Committee and the Congress should provide reasonable Government aid to projects such as this. I believe that rural areas would receive better medical service by having their rural hospital programs integrated with the services and facilities provided by hospitals in the lager cities, which I understand is provided for in S. 191. It seems to me there is another angle to consider. Communities such as mine have suffered severely during the war by the calling to the service of our younger physicians. Having augmented their knowledge during the war, it is but natural that many of them will want to settle in the larger cities unless we provide adequate hospital facilities for them to return to practice in smaller communities. Obviously very few, if any, of them will settle in a small community that has no hospital whatsoever. Consequently, it seems to me, we owe those smaller communities Federal aid in order to attract these young doctors and without whose services our home town citizens will suffer severely.

I am not one who has subscribed to a general program of subsidies, as my voting record will show, and in my opinion our aid should be strictly confined to a grant-in-aid whereby the local community should be expected to put up its just share. As far as our own community is concerned, I think I have done my share as one citizen regardless of whether I happen to be in Congress or not. I think the rest of the citizens in that community will do their share but I fear that unless some Government aid is forthcoming, perhaps, their program might not be realized. I believe it is incumbent upon the people of all the United States through their Congress assembled to grant some aid to communities such as ours through a logical program, call it matching of dollars, if you will, to enable those folks to have sound hospitalization but without any semblance of Gov. ernmental regimentation through Federal control. In other words, to put it bluntly, I am not in favor of socialized medicine in any sense of the word but I do believe that the more prosperous communities can, and the individuals therein should be willing to, contribute to the cost of public hospitals served by individual doctors operating under a system of free enterprise. Very sincerely yours,

FRED BRADLEY, 'M. C.

MARCH 12, 1946. Re S. 191, to amend Public Service Act. Hon. CLÁRENCE F. LEA, Chairman, House Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,

House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. DEAR SIR: I am authorized by the commissioners of roads and revenues of Fulton County, Ga., to express approval of the aims and purposes of S. 191, to authorize grants for hospitals and public health centers and facilities.

In Fulton County, under a health program financed partly by State and Federal funds, 17 out-patient clinics are operated for treatment of tuberculosis, venereal diseases, and other public health menaces and to furnish care in maternity cases. These clinics are so located that health facilities are available to those who need them and in their own communities. Recently the use of two dental mobile units have been inaugurated for school children in rural areas.

As we understand the provisions of S. 191, they will assist and expand programs of this character, which, in our opinion, will aid greatly health work.

The Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority, having supervision over public hospital facilities in our jurisdiction, would be eligible for assistance, affording opportunities for research and the advancement of medical science as well as affording hospitalization to persons in low income brackets.

We consider these projects as entirely worthy of our support from local and State funds and, hence, are sincere in our support of the program on a national basis, and believe the proposed legislation (S. 191) will accomplish these results. Respectfully,

ED L. ALMAND, County Commissioner, Fulton County, Ga., and Chairman, Health and

Sanitary Committee; Member, Board of Health, Fulton County, Ga.

[ocr errors]

CITIZENS' COMMITTEE TO EXTEND MEDICAL CARE,

Chicago, Ill. Hon. J. PERCY PRIEST, Chairman House Committee on Interstate Commerce,

House Office Building, Washington, D. C. DEAR REPRESENTATIVE PRIEST: As chairman of the Citizens' Committee To Extend Medical Care, I am addressing this letter to you to urge your careful consideration of some proposed amendments to the so-called hospital construction bill (S. 191), which is currently before your committee.

The Citizens' Committee To Extend Medical Care was organized here in Chicago last December for the purpose of coordinating the efforts of the several organizations and persons working for the enactment of a national health program. The affiliated organizations include the Chicago Chapter of the Physicians' Forum, the Chicago Chapter of the American Association of Social Workers, the Civic Medical Center of Chicago, the Independent Voters of Illinois, the Chicago Chapter of the Lawyers' Guild, the Social Service Department of the Church Federation of Greater Chicago, the Loyola University School of Social Work, the Social Service Administration Club of the University of Chicago, and various local labor unions.

Our committee strongly urges the enactment of the hospital construction bill substantially in the form in which it was originally filed in the Congress, and we are equally strongly opposed to the crippling and restrictive amendments which were attached to the bill in the Senate and in the Senate Committee. We hope that the House Committee on Interstate Commerce will report the bill in its original form. The first Senate amendment to which we object is the one that gives the hospital advisory council a veto power over the Federal administrator who is to be the surgeon general of the United States Public Health Service. We believe that this advisory council should be preserved as advisory only and that it would be contrary to principles of good administration as well as to sound public policy to permit an unofficial, unpaid and perhaps partisan group to have such a throttle-hold on the program. We also urge that the advisory council include a strong representation of public members as well as representatives of the professional bodies.

Our second objection is to the amended and restricted definition of public health center which is designed to prevent the giving of any medical treatment therein. We believe that it is of the utmost importance to utilize these centers for both public health services as well as medical treatment, permitting local physicians to have their offices in these centers, and to provide a small number of hospital beds in them. This would, as you know, preserve the plan of a network of hospitals and health centers as conceived by the United States Public Health Service. In the third place, it is important that more funds be provided for the construc. tion of hospitals and health centers so that the needs for such institutions can more nearly be realized, particularly in the rural and depressed areas of the country. We also believe that it is important for this bill to carry adequate federal appropriation for the operation and maintenance of the hospitals and health centers constructed. Our final plea is that the bill contain some safeguards in the way of standards to be fixed by the United States Public Health Service which States would be required to meet.

I trust that your committee will give favorable consideration to these suggestions. Sincerely yours,

ALTON A. LINFORD, Chairman.

NATIONAL COOPERATIVES, INC.

WASHINGTON 6, D. C., March 18, 1946. Hon. J. PERCY PRIEST, Chairman, Subcommittee on Public Health, Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee,

House Office Building, Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. PRIEST: You will recall that on last Tuesday, March 12, I was privileged to appear as a witness before your subcommittee and to express the desire of the Cooperative League of the U. S. A., and the National Cooperatives, Inc., to see the enactment of a hospital survey and construction bill: either that bill on which you were holding a public hearing (S. 191), with suitable amendments which we thought necessary, or, a substitute bill which will incorporate the necessary changes.

During the hearing members of the committee as well as several witnesses expressed concern over what they felt would be a critical problem of maintenance and support of hospital facilities after they were established; especially those, which, on a basis of proven need, would be located in rural districts, or in lowincome areas. The point was raised that if the Federal Government shared in the cost of new hospital construction in a community it might subsequently be expected to share in the costs of operation, and that development of such a prop gram might lead to the waste of hospital facilities in communities financially unable to utilize them.

Some interest was shown by members of your committee when in the course of my remarks I stated that the continued support of hospital facilities would not present a problem to our cooperative groups in the areas in which they have influence.

I pointed out that cooperatives were already doing something about the Nation's tragic lack of adequate health facilities; that in typical rural areas at present 5 cooperative hospitals are in operation and that at least 40 are in various stages of development. Under direct questioning I tried to establish the reason for the success of such organizations in the hope of showing the committee that where people are encouraged to do so, and are free to do so, they can maintain and

« PreviousContinue »