Printed in “Current Comment”


A PICTURE printed the other day on the Weekly’s comic page about the ferocities of the vaccinating doctors brought us in a remarkable grist of letters from readers who welcomed us, on the strength of that picture, to the ranks of antivaccination. The warmth of the welcome has been somewhat embarrassing, especially as it is necessary to disclose to these good friends that the picture which they had approved appealed to us only on its comic side, and was not intended as an expression of editorial opinion. The argument against vaccination is a glorious structure, fit to convince any unprejudiced person who believes all that the antivaccinators say, but for our part we must be prejudiced or incredulous. Anyhow, we hold, as yet, with the doctors, and favor vaccination, albeit we much prefer that it should not be compulsory. —Harper’s Weekly.

Printed in “News Notes”

Antityphoid Vaccination.— Major Russell, of the United States Army Medical Corps, recently published a paper on antityphoid vaccination based upon army experiences. Among his conclusions are: (1) Antityphoid vaccination in healthy persons is a harmless procedure; (2) it confers almost absolute immunity against infection; (3) it was the principal cause of the immunity of our troops against typhoid in the recent Texas maneuvers; (4) the period of immunity is two and one-half years, perhaps longer; (5) in only exceptional cases does it cause appreciable personal discomfort; (6) it apparently protects against chronic disease carriers, and at present is the only known means by which a person can be protected against typhoid under all conditions; (7) all persons whose duties involve contact with the sick should be immunized; (8) the general antityphoid vaccination of an entire community is feasible, and could be done without interfering with general sanitary improvements, and should be urged wherever the typhoid rate is high.