7 MARCH 1931, Page 16


Sm,—Your editorial comment upon the letter of " A General Medical Practitioner," in your last issue puts in a nutshell the case for legal recognition and regulation of osteopathy. May I, as the honorary secretary of the Osteopathic Defence League, responsible for the Bill now before Parliament, amplify our case in reply to your correspondents who object to recognition ?

The Bill itself is our answer to most of the arguments and objections put forward by Professor H. J. Paterson. He really should have waited to see the text of the Bill before writing about the training and qualifications of osteopaths. He will find when be does see the Bill that its principal object is to define the scope of such training and to prescribe standards of professional education for osteopaths not inferior to those which have been established for the medical profession. The Bill sets up a Board whose responsibility it will be to maintain these standards, which are set out with great particularity in a schedule to the Bill : no school or college of osteopathy will be recognised that does not conform to these standards.

What more can we do to satisfy medical men like Professor Paterson who insist, and rightly so, upon adequate safeguards against unqualified and incompetent persons being allowed to impose upon the public by claiming to be able to diagnose and treat disease ? I claim to be as much opposed to toleration of the quack and charlatan as Professor Paterson : more so, indeed, inasmuch as I have been working for years past to obtain an alteration of the law which will permit only qualified and reputable persons to practise mechano-therapy, or any other therapy ; whereas Professor Paterson is apparently willing to allow the law to remain in its present unsatisfactory state, although it does not protect the public nor the medical profession nor my own against the unqualified practitioner.

—I am, Sir, &c., WILFRID A. STREETER- (Hon. Secretary,) The Osteopathic Defence League), 71 Park Street, London, W. 1.

[This letter has been shortened for reasons of space.—En. Spectator.]