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Family Notices


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INFANT MORTALITY, The number of deaths under five years was 43, being at at the rate of 4-4 per 1,000 per annum. In infants under one year there were 29 deaths, being in the proportion of 141 deaths to every 1,000 births, as compared with 128 per I 000 for 1895, and 161 per 1,000 births for the whole of England and Wales for the same period. In maBy respects this is satisfactory, but it must be admitted that even in this district a considerable number of infants are sacrificed unnecessarily, and this is due beyond doubt to injudicious feeding and defective management of infants. Mortality among old people.— No less than 68 of the deaths were persons 65 years and up. wards, that is, 43 per cent of the whole deaths, or at the rate of 7 per 1,000 per annum. Zymotic death rate.-Sevel deaths occurred from zymotic disease, namely, 3 from scarlet fever, which is notifiable, and 3 from whooping cough, which is not notifiable; thus giving a death rate of 0 7 per 1,000 per annum. In all the deaths from whooping cough there was some secondary complication. Other causes of deatlt.-Disease of the respira- tory organs was certified as the cause of 29 deaths, and heart disease was certified as the cause of 15 deaths, 24 deaths were caused by diseases of the nervous system, while 13 were attributed to convulsions, and which is pro- bably the least reliable of all the certitied causes of death. Prevalence of infectious disease and Notifica- tioit.-Durin,- the year 43 cases of scarlet fever, and one of diphtheria were notified. The case of diphtheria occurred at Plas, Llangwyfan, and seemed to have been caused by foul air from a defective drain. The epidemics of scarlet fever in the sub districts of Llanelidan and Llanrhai- adr caused us considerable anxiety and threa- tened to assume alarming proportions, but by a steady and persistent application of precau- tionary measures, such an isolation, disinfec- tions, school closure, etc., the progress of the epidemic in both places was arrested. In the case of Llanelidan, the infection was conveyed by a little child from Liverpool to Garthygroes, from Garthygroes to Ty isa, and so on. We have on more than one occasion had reason to know that the authorities in the large towns are far more careful about the importation than of the exportation of infetious disease. The epidemic in Llanrhaiadr was more scattered, and all the cases could not be traced to a com- mon source. However, I was able to prove conclusively that the infection in the first in- stance was brought from a distance. Some children were brought to the parish for a change of air, from some school and charitable institution in Lancashire. These children mixed with the school children, and thus the fever was spread, In order to impress upon parents and others the importance of isolation, section 126 of the Public Health Act 1875 was printed on slips in Welsh and English. These were left at every infected house, and at all public places in the aeighbourhood. I also sent a circular letter to guardians, schoolmasters, and others, requesting their co-operation in enforcing the necessary precautions. Measles and whooping cough were also pre- valent in several parts of the district during the year, but as they are not notifiable it is not so easy to gauge the extent of their prevalence. However the same precautions were taken as in the other zymotic disease. DISINFECTING APPARATUS NEEDED. I drew attention in my last report to the difficulties of providing hospital accommoda tion for infectious cases, and as these appear to be insuperable, some more efficient means of disinfecting infected bedding, bed clothes, wear- ing apparel, etc., should he provided. Suitable appliances for disinfecting by steam (the only reliable method) are now to be obtained at a moderate cost. Further dimsion\of the district.—In the month of August the district was divided into two districts for sanitary purposes) viz., the Llan- rhaiadr and the Ruthin districts. An inspector of nuisances was appointed for each district, each inspector to be also surveyor of his dis- trict. I, at first, doubted the wisdom of this plan, thinking in might seriously break the continuity of the excellent work carried on heretofore by Mr. Ebenezer Evans, but I have been agreeably disappointed. The new inspec- tor, Mr. W. Jones, entered upon his duties ^"with energy aad intelligence and I now look ^upon the arrangement as being admirably adapted to the requirements of the widely extended district. Systematic Inspection. I have during the year at certain periods, and as occasion re- quired, inspected the district, to keep myself informed by personal observation, as to any condition injurious to health, and I am pleased to be able to report that much excellent work has been carried out during the year in connec- tion with dwellings, their surroundings, water supply, drainage, etc., but, as in my previous report, the greatest cause for complaint, is the condition of the rural cottages, which are in places dilapidated, so small, and so few rooms that, when a family is large, decency is impos- sible and disease inevitable. As a proof of the fact that the prevalence and the virulence of infectious disease are increased by the crowd- ing together of human beings in small rooms, I might mention the fact that during the severe epidemic of measles, which occurred a few years ago, only 3 deaths occurred, and in each case all the^nembers of each family slept in the same room. WATER SUPPLY. The council met a few times expressly to consider the numerous schemes for the better water supply of the district, and ifc will be seen under the respective sub districts that several excellent improvements have been carried out in this respect. Still it is much to be regretted that hardly any progress has been made with the larger schemes. RUTHIN SUB DISTRICT. Death rate, 18'3 per 1,000 per annum. Birth rate 30 per 1,000 per annum. Whooping cough was extremely prevalent about Llanbedr in the spring, and the school had to be closed for a considerable time. Cases of scarlet fever also occurred at Brynffynnon, Fronfelus, Fronhyfryd, and Pwllglas, in the parish of Efenechtyd. The Fronhyfryd case which was infected away from home, termina- ted fatally. MEDICAL OFFICER'S ANNUAL REPORT. The annual report of the Medical Officer was read as follows;- Wider Supply,—The suggestions for improving the water supply of Tanyrunto and Pentre, Llanbedr have not been carried out. Four new houses have been built at Ehiw, Pwllglas. GYFFYLLIOG SUB DISTRICT. Death rate 16 3 per 1,000 per annum. Birth date 28-8 per 1,000 per annum. Owing to a rather severe outbreak of meas- les the Gyffylliog school had to be closed for srveral weeks. The only case of scarlet fever occurred at Wern ucha, Nantglyn, and was imported from Llanrhaiadr. Dwellings improved A new house has been built at Hafod Wen, Nantglyn, and Tanygraig, Gyfiylliog, has been much improved. LLANDYRNOG SUB DISTRICT. Death rate 16-9 per 1,009 per annum. Birth rate 16'9 per 1,000 per annum. By a strange coincidence, the birth rate and the death rate were equal. A death rate of 16-9 may be considered satisfactory, but as a birthrate it is highly unsatisfactory, and much lower than in any other of the sub districts. Whooping cough was prevalent early in the year, and two deaths were indirectly caused by it. Three cases of scarlet fever occurred at Dregoch, and infection was brought from Llan- dudno. The case of diphtheria has already been referred to. The drainage of the following places has been much improved, viz, the vil- lage of Llandyrnog, Rhiwbebyll and Waenwen. New houses have been built at Llidiart Fawr (Plas Draw), and Pentrefelin. Tynycaeau has at last been considerably improved. Ty isa, Aberwheeler, has had a new supply of water, and the stream passing Bancer Smithy has been freed from pollution, but the plan sugges- ted for the supply of Peel Hall has not yet been carried out I regret I cannot compliment the council upon the progress made with the Llangwyfan scheme, and it is much to be deplored that a question so vitally aflecting the well being of so large a proportion of the population of the sub district should be thus indefinitely pos- poned. LLANRHAIADR SUB DISTRICT. Death rate, 15 8 per 1,000 per annum. Birth rate 29-0 per 1,000 per annum. Owing to the outbreak of scarlet fever al- ready referred to, the Llanrhaiadr school had to be closed for two periods of 14 days. Cases occurred at the following places, viz: Bryneglur, Pentre, Llanrhaiadr, Old Vicarage, King's Head Inn, and Tanydderwen. These were without difficulty traced to a common source. The water supply of Cyrnro Inn, Ty Mawr, and Ty coch, Llanynys, has been much improved, bub notwithstanding persistent efforts, the schemes for the better supply of Efail-y Pwll, Prion, Henefail, Saron, Tyddyn ucha, and the village of Llanrhaiadr, have not been carried out. Equally unsuccessful was the effort made to induce the owner of the adjoining property to fell some of the trees which are an unhealthy encroachment upon the chapel house, Rhewl. LLANELIDAN SUB DISTRICT. Death rate 17'8. Birth rate 23'4. Cases of scarlet fever occurred at all the fol- lowing places, viz: Caerwyn, Llanfair Village, Brynllwynog, and Ty newydd, in the parish of Derwen Garthygroes, Ty isa, Nantyfedw, Bethergen Braichycwm, in the parish of Llaneli- dan. The Llanfair and the Llanelidan schools were closed for a short period. Water supply.-The following places were supplied during the year from the Cricor reser- voir; Bryncoch, Capel Farm and Llanbenwch. Bryn dreiniog, Derwen, has also had an excel- lent supply, but very little progress has been made with the Derwen Village, Wernhenaidd and Graigadwy-wynt schemes. Drainage.-The plan for the more efficient drainge of this village will be carried out soon. The drainage of Eyarth and Derwen Stations has been much improved. Water closets have been substituted for the offensive privies at Llanfair school which were so often con- demned, LLANARMON SUB DISTRICT. Death rate 14'5. Birth rate 27-3. Wate?-SuppZy.-Effortswere andare being made to get the well which is situated in a field near Tan-y-ffynnnon (E:yrys) enclosed so as to pre- vent surface contaminatim by cattle, etc. In time of drought, it is the only supply for a mile radius. Tyddyndows and Penybryn, Llanferres should be supplied from the Mold reservoir. The Haven, Llandegla.—The defective drain- age of this place (referred to in Dr. Bruce Low's report) has been thoroughly rectified, and the course of the stream, which formerly used to run along the side of the house has been diverted. Improvement in dtt)elliws. -Some excellent improvements have been carried out in this sub district, especially at Cwai, Tyddynsach, Cross Keys, Waenyffynnon, Breninlle and Rhos Smithy. I have the honour to be gentlemen, Your obedient Servant, J. MEDWYN HUGHES. Medical Officer of Healths The Chairman %,tid Dr. Hughes had prepared a very good and a very elaborate report. Al- though a long sermon, it was an excellent re- port in every respect, and he congratulated Dr. Hughes upon it. He noticed that the birth rate was lower in the parish of Llandyrnog than any other of the sub districts. Perhaps Dr. Hughes would explain more fully what he meant by the injudicious feeding of infants ? Dr. Hughes said that linfants were given food which they could not digest. Parents gene- rally adapted the infant to the food. That was a great mistake in many places. They gave their children food they could not digest. No child should have anything but milk un- til it was five months old. Mr. E. P. Jones No beer? Dr. Hughes: No beer (laughter). RUTHIN GRAMMAR SCHOOL. The Clerk said he had received a letter from the Charity Commissioners simply acknow- ledging the receipt of the resolution passed at the Council with reference to the Ruthin Gram- mar School. THE ERECTION OF BRIDGES. j Considerable discussion took place as* «v fI, re- quest made to the council to erect a bridge on the boundary of the parishes of Llanfwrog and Llanynys, and the clerk was asked to give his opinion as to who was the proper authority to carry out the work. The Clerk said the parishes in question could approach the County Council in the matter of erecting this bridge, and the County Council had undoubtedly a right to issue an order com- pelling the Rural District Council to do the work. Therefore the bridge in the present case would have to be erected by the District Council. Mr. T. H. Roberts said considerable doubt existed on the question of erecting and repair- ing bridges in the district. In some cases, they were told that the District Council was the authority responsible for the work, whilst in others, the Parish Councils were named. He would suggest that the question he adjourned tor a month for further inquiry The Clerk said that the bridge in this case would have to be erected by the District Coun- cil, and every case would have to be decided on its own merits. It was ultimately decided to do the work. THE SLEDGE QUESTION. Mr. Thomas Williams, of Llanarmon, wrote promising to carry annually a sufficient quan- tity of stone for the repair of the Penyfoel Hill road, if the council granted the use of sledges on the road. This question had been before the council on several previous occassion, and the use of the sledges had been prohibited. The Chairman said it did not appear from Mr. Williams' letter that he represented any body but himself. Mr. Richards said that Mr. Thomas Williams was already the responsible party for the car- tage over the road in question. The Clerk said that in their last offer with respect to this road, the people who used the sledges promised not only to carry the stones, but also to repair the road. In the present letter, Mr. Williams only offered to carry sufficient stones. Mr. John Williams: The present offer is therefore not so satisfactory as the last. Mr. Richards Personally, I think the pre- sent offer is a very satisfactory, one. It means a great deal more than the extra damage to the road caused by the use of the sledges. The Chairman suggested that sledges be al- lowed on one condition, that the previous offer be renewed, viz., that they should not only carry the stone, but put them down also. Mr. Richards thought this was a great deal too much to ask of any man. The Chairman But the offer came from the men themselves. Mr. T. H. Roberts proposed that permission be given to use the sledges for one year on the condition laid down in Mr. Williams' letter, but that the surveyor be authorised to stop their use if he thought the damage done was excessive. Mr. Henry Williams seconded. Mr. Thomes Jones said if this was agreed to, Mr. Williams' letter should be stamped and made a legal document. Mr. Richards Am I to understand that Mr. Thomas Jones wants this offer to be stamped ? Mr. Thomas Jones Yes. 1 suggest that the clerk should prepare an agreement and have it stamped in the usual way. Mr. Richards I think we ought to leave such matters to the, clerk. It is his bnsi- ness to see that the work is done legally. Mr. Thomas Jones: I have suggested the right thing, and you have no business to cast imputations on my motives. Mr. Richards But it is a matter for the clerk. The Clerk said he might have easily over- looked the matter, had in not been mentioned by Mr. Jones. The motion of Mr. J. H. Roberts was then carried. GYFFYLLIOG BRIDGE. The Council having at a previous meeting declined to repair and widen the bridge in the village of Gyflylliog, Mr. Hugh Thomas, Post Master, now wrote offering to supply the necessary materials at his own ex- pense, if the council did the work. Mr. E. P. Jones: The rates are getting higher and higher, and we are continually ap- pealed to erect bridges of this kind. I should like to know what is the matter with the people (laughter). We must provide them with lamps jusb now to enable them to drive over these bridges at night (loud laughter). Mr. T. H. Roberts called attention to the fact that according to the councillor for the pari- shes, the work was not absolutely necessary, and would be of no benefit to the parish. It was decided to leave the matter at present, and to intimate to Mr. Hugh Thomas that the council would have no objection for him doing the work subject to the approval of the sur- veyor.