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MODERN NURSING.


pital looking for the interest of the single patient only might just as well be a private institution, a maison de santé for the benefit of a landlord. The benefit derived from hospital treatment by a sick person is not all the satisfaction due to a public who pay four hundred dollars a year for every bed. Nor are the public paid sufficiently for their sacrifices by the accumulated experiences of a few physicians, who enjoy the large field of observation and the opportunity of utilizing it for the benefit of private patients. Every hospital which neglects to increase the stock of medical knowledge, and to give an opportunity of learning the theory and practice of nursing and caring for the sick, performs its duties but half, and serves the public but incompletely. Every large hospital must be, and will be, a clinical school, and a school for nurses. It will be acknowledged that as the presence of a nurse in a sick-ward, who is sent there to learn, is considered unobjectionable, the presence of a few physicians observing a case, which can not be injured by their so doing, is not only not injurious, but ought to be demanded by the public, who have a right to expect a physician in their own families who has seen and knows and understands what he is called in to treat. I do not see why hospital patients only should have the best money and service can afford, and why the public at large should have to fall back in many cases on untried skill. Thus the people have a right to demand that every large hospital should have a clinical school, and a training-school for nurses. The public, who are willing to pay for it, may also demand that the expenses of the same, particularly the nurses' school, should be borne by the hospital. This demand, if considered theoretical only, must stand as long as a hospital is, or claims to be, a public institution. When the board of directors of any institution will recognize that they are not the administrators of the dollars of a small concern, but the benefactors of the public at large, they will also appreciate not only that a few disinterested ladies will open their pocket-books, and collect voluntary contributions, but that a generous public will pay more willingly and more largely.

The demand that a large hospital should be a clinical school and a school for nurses, and that the expense should or might be borne by the institution, is not valid in the case of city or commonwealth hospitals only. Most of the hospitals of the country are originally private institutions. They obtain the character of being public affairs when an always increasing number of men and women become interested in and contributors to them. An institution with one or two thousand paying members represents ten or twenty thousand families—in fact, represents a city. And what it represents, of that it assumes the rights and duties. And the main duty the public at large will soon know how to enforce from the directors of every large hospital is, to administer the public domain to the greatest possible advantage for the greatest possible number. The selfishness of an individual adversary, the animosity of evil-spirited persons will never weigh,