Health care in the fifties: Part 2. Reminiscences from our veteran colleagues

  • Mimi O


The Travelling Dresser                                                   Haji Mohamad bin Abdul Latiff’s study was interrupted by theJapanese occupation (1941-1945). After the war ended, armedonly with a Junior Cambridge certificate, he was immediatelyaccepted as a probationer dresser (trainee hospital assistant)at Kuantan District Hospital. He was given hospital quartersand received $40 a month.It was the Emergency period with the communist insurgencyin full swing; he saw many soldiers and communists admittedwith gunshot wounds. In those days, there were only twodoctors in the 150-bedded District Hospital, hence medicalassistants and nurses took on lots more clinical responsibilitiesthan it is now. His duty during school visits was to check Std.1 pupils for enlarged spleen; a sign of malaria. Half of thechildren were found to have splenomegaly and were treatedwith quinine. There were so many cases of malnutrition andworm infestation that iron tonics and deworming were routinelyadministered to every patient. He had to grind and mix theiron tonic himself following a specified formula. Patients weregiven a dose of castor oil after deworming and passed outballs of worms. (copied from article)
How to Cite
OM. (2012). Health care in the fifties: Part 2. Reminiscences from our veteran colleagues. Malaysian Family Physician, 2(1), 3. Retrieved from
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