Mr. H. S. BELAND (Beauce) (Translation).
Mr. Speaker, the question of the prevention and cure of tuberculosis has been considered in this House on several previous occasions. The hon. member for Argenteuil (Mr. Perley) alone has already had on the order paper two resolutions in
reference to this matter. My hon. friend from Hants (Mr. Black) also took the matter up, though in another form, two years ago. However, to my mind, a question such as this cannot be often and too carefully considered, and too great pressure cannot be brought to bear on the government in this connection.
Already, on a previous occasion, I have clearly expressed my views, both as a physician a.nd as a representative of the people, on this very live question. There is too much force and eloquence in the grim and cold facts or statistics submitted by the hon. member to make it necessary that I should dilate at any length on the sufferings brought about by the scourge of tuberculosis. After what has been so clearly and so neatly stated by the mover of the resolution, it only remains for me to approve of the conclusion laid down in regard to the grant in favour of the anti-tuberculosis association.
Indeed it would be regrettable were Canada, a leader in so many branches of industrial and commercial activity, to sadly lag behind when confronted with a social and economical problem of such importance. All civilized countries have realized what enormous losses result from the spread of tuberculosis, and have applied preventive and curative measures of the greatest efficiency.
The Dominion government has made a good beginning, but it behoves all members of this House who like myself belong to the medical profession to make official quarters ring with the necessity, in the country's interest, of preventing the spread of tuberculosis, and particularly of tuberculosis of the lungs.
I am of opinion, as previously stated, that a certain amount should be deducted from the items appropriated directly or indirectly towards forwarding immigration, and an equal amount spent towards the prevention and cure of tuberculous diseases. To my mind, more value should be attached from our country's standpoint, to saving the life of one Canadian snatched from the grip of tuberculosis, than to securing an immigrant from foreign shores, whatever his worth.
In short, Mr. Speaker, we have before us a question of the greatest import both from the economical and humanitarian standpoint; and I trust that the government, desirous of forwarding the best interests of the country, will find their way to granting a still larger appropriation to the men who have assumed the task of putting a stop, in this country, to what is sometimes termed the wdiite plague.
Subtopic: EXTRACTS FROM THE REPORT OF DR LAW, MEDICAL OFFICER OF HEALTH, OTTAWA, FOR THE YEAR ENDING OCTOBER 31, 1908.