Source: International Journal of Surgery
Source type: journal
Document type: editorial
Document title: “From Buffalo”
Date of publication: October 1901
Volume number: 14
Issue number: 10
|“From Buffalo.” International Journal of Surgery Oct. 1901 v14n10: p. 314.|
|McKinley assassination (personal response); Roswell Park; William McKinley (medical care); William McKinley (medical care: personal response).|
The unfortunate tragedy at Buffalo emphasizes the fact that in selecting the Medical Director for Expositions and for other high positions, merit rather than influence should decide the question—the place should seek the man. The Medical Director at Buffalo is all that could be desired, but when one accepts such a position and the Chief Executive of the nation is in town, the surgeon should be one of his party, he should be right on hand every moment, lest some other Doctor Mann might be called to operate for him in his absence.
In the President’s case at Buffalo, the value
of prompt action, ability, and all necessary preparation in advance for emergency
work was clearly demonstrated to the world. The accident, however, might have
occurred at a point of some considerable distance from hospital facilities,
or transportation might have been a question for consideration after the operation.
In either event the great value and absolute necessity of having either hospital cars, or the hospital compartment in one car of all through trains, should at this time be fully realized by all. Railway employees are not the only people who may suddenly feel the need of the hospital compartment car, even officials, directors and stockholders are not exempt.
The Chief Executive of the nation has been stricken and suppose it had been found necessary to transport him by rail for any distance without delay? The people of this up-to-date nation would have read not with pride, but with shame and just indignation, that their President “was made as comfortable as possible under the circumstances, by turning two seats of a day-coach together for a couch,” or by placing him on a cot or stretcher in the mail or baggage car. Yet this is exactly what would have taken place had necessity required immediate railway transportation of the President, for among the many trunk lines entering Buffalo not one has a hospital car, or has made the least preparation in advance for the humane transportation of the sick and injured.