health is the basis of mental, industrial, and national health,
and of moral and material wealth. Without a strong foundation
we cannot get, and ought not to expect, a strong superstructure;
and both foundation and superstructure will depend on the health
of the units forming the whole. Hospital accommodation assists
to repair and build up these units, and thereby promotes both
individual and general well-being; consequently, hospitals have
a claim on the sympathy and assistance of healthful people.
would be the case if only physical advantages were derivable from
such aid. But hospitals promote the moral as well as the physical
health of the people, in as much as their existence and action, and
the methods adopted to maintain them, are productive of private and
are as sacred as churches, and are entitled to as much consideration
as churches, if not more; and nurses are entitled to as much
consideration as clergymen, if not more. Many a man and woman,
boy and girl, leave hospitals improved in heart as well as health.
Many a tender tale and touching anecdote or incident, the result
of experience, is told from day to day in humble homes by patients
who have undergone hospital treatment. Hospitals, in fact, sweeten
the breath and improve the tone of society.
moral fruitage alone more than compensates for all the means and activity
invested in hospital husbandry. Acting under this conviction, I have
provided hospital buildings where none existed before-at Falmouth,
Liskeard, Willesden, Wood Green, Acton, Tilbury, East Ham, Sutton
in Surrey; a new wing, with accommodation for twenty-four beds, to
the West Ham Hospital, and a children's wing to the Women's Hospital,
Redruth. Four of the hospitals mentioned-those of Willesden, Wood
Green, Tilbury, and Acton-have, since their erection, been enlarged
and unitedly more than doubled in bed and other accommodation; thus
proving that they have not only met local wants and answered their
intended purpose in their respective districts, but have sensibly
lessened the pressure on the great metropolitan hospitals.