Questions about Quality of Care – 1915

Over the years, there were numerous occasions when concerns were raised about the quality of care provided by Morningside Hospital. The earliest we’ve found was in 1915. The Sunday, March 28, 1915 issue of the Atlanta Constitution included the following story:

Syndicate Enriched from Insane Asylum
Juneau, Alaska. March 27 – A report criticising the Morningside sanitarium at Portland Ore., where Alaska insane are cared for under contract with the government, was returned yesterday by the judicial committee of the territorial legislature. The report demanded “that conditions there, by which the syndicate is enriched $30,000 annually, be improved.”

The report says: “The ninety insane are in cramped and crowded quarters, with no reasonable space for living or sleeping. Some of the patients sleep on the floor.” Copies of the report were ordered forwarded to President Wilson, Secretary Lane, and Governor Strong.

Portland, Ore., March 27 – A denial that there was any ground for statements contained in the report of the judiciary committee to the Alaska territorial legislature critising the Morningside Sanitarium, where Alaska insane patients are cared for, was made by Dr. Viola May Coe, one of the owners of the sanitarium.

“The sanitarium is inspected by representatives of the government twice a year,” said Dr. Coe, “and the patients are well cared for. We have accomodations for 200 patients and at present there are but 98 there, so the charge that we are overcrowded is untrue.”

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