** Anne Morgan French aiding Picardymedical

Anne Morgan: Aiding France--Medical Services

Figure 1.--Morgan's American Committee did not have staff doctors. Rather they worked closely with American Women's Hospitals. As a result many of the people of Picardy got some of their first modern dental treatment. The Committe did initiate a nursing program focusing on pediatric child care.

The Committe volunteers were for the most part not doctors or nurses. By the time of World War I, however, there were some 6,000 women doctors in America. This was not the case in France. Many women physician in Ameruca wanted to play a part in the war effort. They were, however, not afforded officer status in the military medical corps. And the concept of female dictors was a whole new concept for the French. Becuse oif the need, they could, however, treat civilians. The American Women's Hospitals (AWH) was formed (1917). The AWH and the Committee quickly fashioned a working relationship, offering a varirty of medical services in the hardest-hit regions. This included dental services. Many Frenvh people had no access to modern dental services, especually in rurl areas. The AWH set up dental clinics offering cleanings, fillings, extractions, and instruction in basic dental hygiene. Many children did not even have tooth brushes. One observer wrote, "It is amusing to watch ... children scamper away down the lane of ruins, each right hand bristling with a brand-new toothbrush." Mary Breckinridge (1881–1965) was one of the most valuavble volunteers. She was a trained nurse and after the devestaing loss of her young children she volunteered for the American Committee. She helped Morgana and Dike set up children's health services, collaborated with the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing in Bordeaux to train the Pickard women in child care. Breckinridge studied midwifery and public health before returning home to Kentucky. There armed with her experiences she became a pioneer in American nurse-midwifery. She founded the Kentucky Committee for Mothers and Babies (now the Frontier Nursing Service) which sent nurses out on horseback to aid women in remote rural, often mountanous areas.


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Created: 3:28 PM 3/4/2021
Last updated: 3:28 PM 3/4/2021