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- INS ANITY AMONG THE UPPER…

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INS ANITY AMONG THE UPPER GLASSES. The following letter ia being circulated in South Wales and adjacent counties: "ÂitylulDi for the Insane' Of the Upper Glasses.—Huntington-court, Hereford, January, 1878. Sir,—The ratepayers of England and Wales having to a gnat extent provided asylum accommodation for 'heir pauper patients, it would aeema fitting time for them to consider whether it is not desirable to provide institutions of a somewhat similar kind for the insane among their own class. At present such persona are sent to licensed houses in various parts of the country, and are there maintained at a cost in many instances greater than their relatives or friends should be called upon to bear..680 is stated to be the average yearly charge, and £52 the lowest. It is obvious such charges must be made in esta- blishments kept and managed for profit. Even this accommodation, with the exception of the Briton Ferry Asylum, with ita twenty-eight inmates, is not to be found in South Walea and the adjacent counties of Monmouth and Hereford, and the private patients from this extensive district have to be sent to licensed houses in London and other parts of England. On the other hand, we find in Scotland asylums of a pub- lic kind have long been provided for the upper classes. These are known as Royal Chartered Asylums, and were in the first instance mainly founded through private benevolence. The best kind of treatment is there obtainable, and at a very moderate coat, probably not exceeding the yearly average of £30. Last Session of Parlia- ment a Select Committee of the House of Commons received ^evidence on the subject of the treatment of lunatics, and the witnesses then ex- amined very generally recommended the adoption of such asylums, if not in lieu altogether of licensed houses, at any rate as an alternative to them. The number of tbe insane among the upper classes in Seuth Wales may be estimated at 210, and in the counties of Monmouth and Hereford at 90, or a total of 300. Why, then, abould net some of these coun- ties unite for the purpose of providing out of the rates suitable buildings at aelected localities, and a guarantee against any loss that might possibly ensue in the management of them? The first coat would not be great, and after a year or two such asylums would probably be entirely self supporting. •" At thia momeat the paupers are much better put up in asylums than the upper classes, not only relatively but absolutely better put up. I should rather be a pauper myself if I had the misfortune to be in aa asylum, says Dr. Lockhart Robertson to the Select Committee. Thiaahouldnotbe. The end to be attained is that of securing a comfortable home to the insane of the upper classes, where the best possi- ble treatment can be had, and at a very moderate cost, and where it is to the interest of no one to keep a patient longer than is absolutely necessary. To what wiser or better purpose could the ratepayers devote a smal^ portion of their county rates ? Par- fcamentary sanction will be required for the.carryMg oat of the aaheme, the outline of which I have given; and if tJUa circular meeta with a favourable response from the pafclic it will be necessary by concerted efforts to invoke the assistanoe of the legislature. I after the consideration which I am sure you will give to the subject, yon think the proposal worthy of your support, you will allow me to add your name to the list of its supporters, I have the honour to remain, air, yoar obedient servant, Jon LLOYD." 1.

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