William B. Bean, M.D.
JAMA. 1954;154(8):639-642. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02940420001001.
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The subject of this paper suggests that for a moment we have pause from the busy furor of our daily lives, back off a little, and think on where we are and whither we are going. Since this meeting is aimed consciously at the man in general practice, let us for a moment consider the horse-and-buggy doctor of 1953. His horses are not those literal beasts of burden and transport of his grandfather's time but rather engines of 100 horse-power, and the buggy, like as not, is a Cadillac. In his black bag are not just some tongue blades, a stethoscope, and a few specific and nonspecific remedies used with infinite effect but literally dozens of highly potent drugs —antibiotics, hormones, sedatives, vitamins—which he sometimes dispenses with bewildering liberality and abandon. Whereas his grandfather was the friend, adviser, and general sage of the families in his care, today the physician


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