Health Care in the Thirty’s

There is so much talk about Obama Care these days and much of it is scary. I hope none of the things they are saying will come true but I am sure some of it will. For instance, I believe the cost will go up and there will be taxes. I imagine there will be more doctors quitting and going into some other line of work and that will mean it will be more difficult for us to get an appointment.

I don’t know when health insurance began but I am sure that it began when the costs went up! I’m positive we didn’t have health insurance when my first two kids were born because I have the bill. One was for $20.00 and the other was for $40.00. Those were both hospital bills and I don’t remember the doctor bill was much higher.

I remember the thirty’s quite well. Doc Wiltrout came to our house every time someone fell down or was sick. It felt comfortable just having him come in the door. When he had finished taking our temps and patting us on our heads he’d take the change in Daddy’s pocket and leave. If it was something quite serious he’d drive us to the hospital 16 miles away. I,d say most of the small town doctors did their work similar to Doc. Wiltrout. One time he even set the leg of our dog, Firdinand! And I know his wife fried a lot of chicken because he was often paid in chickens!

The doctor’s advise given in the 20th century was written up in a paper called Vivilore. Here is some of the advise:To remedy cold feet and hands you must eat more starch and it is recommended to eat this with sugar or honey. Ice water should be avoided because it causes the mucous membrane of the stomach to become temporarily pale and bloodless.Baldness is caused by sickness, worry, excessive study and free exercise of passion. Treatment of it is rubbing the scalp until it is red, then add an onion cut in two and rubbed over the scalp morning and night. to determine the sex of your offspring you must count on the sex of the older or younger parent to be transmitted.

While these remedies seem strange and funny today, at least you didn’t have to worry about costs etc.My guess is that we should all get into the habit of eating an apple every day because it has been long known that an apple a day keeps the doctor away!


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