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Report of First Lieut. John R. Devereux, Medical Department, U.S. Army

Books and Documents > The U.S. Army Medical Department in the Aftermatch of the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire of 18 April 1906

Report of First Lieut. John R. Devereux, Medical Department,
United States Army

HEADQUARTERS PACIFIC DIVISION,
 San Francisco, Cal., June 23, 1906

SIR: In compliance with instructions of the division commander, I have the honor to make the following report on the subject of typhoid fever and smallpox:

We have an account of 99 cases of typhoid fever; of these 99 cases 4 cases occurred prior to April 18; of the 95 remaining cases 30 originated in April, 55 in May, and 10 in June. Of these 95 cases there are remaining 49 either in hospitals or in private houses, 17 have died, and 33 have been discharged as cured. Of the 49 remaining cases there are 4 in the United States General Hospital that are, to all intents and purposes, cured cases, so that practically we have but 45 cases of typhoid fever remaining in the city. Of the total number of cases reported there have only been 5 that were derived from the permanent camps whose residence was sufficiently long to have made their infection possible at these camps.

The monthly statistics here given will differ considerably from those of the health department of this city, inasmuch as they consider a case reported in any particular month as being "an admitted case for the month," whereas all of the 99 cases have been carefully analyzed, taking into consideration the day reported, the length of time sick previous, etc., and from this data was determined their proper "day of admission."

The United States General Hospital and the United States Field Hospital have had a total of 26 cases treated in their hospitals, with 2 deaths. One of these, which occurred at the United States Field Hospital, was admitted at 6 o'clock one evening and died next morning. The mortality for all cases is high.

Statistics from the State Board of Health show that the average number of admissions per month for the past two years have been 12. Comparing this with the figures given above it will be seen that the month of April showed 30 cases, not one of which was infected as


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as a result of any of the conditions following the disaster for the reason that the period between April 18 and May 1 was less than the shortest period of incubation.

Smallpox.-Of the smallpox cases there were admitted in the smallpox hospital in the month of April 74 cases, with 9 deaths; during the month of May 41 admissions, 2 deaths; during the month of June to date there have been 8 new cases admitted, no deaths, and 25 cases remaining in hospital. The total number of cases therefore is 123, with 11 deaths.

There have been approximately in permanent camps 15,000 people and only one case has originated in a camp under our control. The Health Department gives me a report of 5 cases as having been taken from camps. An analysis of those cases will show them to have originated either before we took charge or them not to have been at what we now call "permanent camps."

                                                    Very respectfully,

                                                     J. R. DEVEREUX,
                                   Assistant Surgeon

The Military Secretary,
Pacific Division, San Francisco, Cal.