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Original Contributions

JANUARY, 1926

(EXCLUSIVELY FOR THE MEDICAL HERALD)

PROBLEMS OF THE MEDICAL
SOCIETIES OF TODAY
JOHN WALTER MARTIN, M. D.,
Des Moines, Iowa

NYTHING that I may say to you will not be new or startling, I have solved no mysterious Scientific problem and I have. no pet hobby with which to burden you. know it is the usual custom at this time to give your retiring president a chance to show his ability as an orator. I simply wish to thank you kindly for the privilege, but from the advice of friends who know me best, I shall decline the honor. Yet I do have a few thoughts that I would like to unload upon you for your consideration. First of all I want to thank the Society for the honor which you have bestowed upon me by making me president of such an organization. In looking over the names of those upon whom have bestowed this honor, I consider it, indeed, a privilege to have my name associated with such men. An honor I shall always remember and cherish.

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This Society is one of the oldest. Almost forty years ago a few men with high ideals met to formulate plans to organize a society that would carry on with the object to foster, advance and disseminate medical knowledge; to uphold and maintain the dignity of the profession; and to encourage social and harmonious relations within its ranks. So, naturally, there is a bond of friendship that can never be broken except by the inevitable, which comes to all. With this foundation we cannot let this Society go backward, it must go onward. The task of carrying on the advancement of this Society and of making it one of the best

President's address, Medical Society of the Missouri Valley, St. Joseph, Mo., September 30, October 1 and 2, 1925.

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in the country falls upon our shoulders, and such an opportunity!

An organization founded almost forty years ago in the best states in the Union, among people of the highest intelligence, men of the Medical profession with the highest standards and ideals, Medical schools and Medical centers unequalled anywhere. With all these woven and interwoven, and with all the modern facilities at our command, we are given a foundation for the future of this Society which is unequalled.

There was a time when Medical societies were satisfied with a program of the 1, 2, 3 order of papers on various subjects taken from standard text books, but today progress in our profession demands more. So as the times demand progress, and as we have a society founded on the best the country affords, from every source, it seems to me that we should right-about-face and meet the issue. We are either going to go on or cease to function, and what a pity to cease to function with such a foundation. It seems to me the remedy would be for us to be known as the Missouri Valley Clinical Society, with clinics and help from our medical centers and at the various centers have the clinics put on by men of our Society, combined with group papers and symposiums on various subjects as we have attempted to bring out in our program at this time. I feel that such a society would increase our acquaintance and our friendships, and carry on the ideals of our profession, and that such meetings would be a regular post-graduate course for all of us.

Time changes all things. The day of the "One Hoss Shay" and the saddle bags is gone, but there still remain the same ideals, the same chivalry, the same self-sacrifice, the same earnestness of purpose and endeavor. The days of the six months' Medical course have gone. There has been evolution in the Science of Medicine as in everything else. "From the earliest days of recorded history man has been struggling to preserve health and life, and how wonderfully has the struggle for existence developed, until today there is no

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