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Weill Cornell MedicineA History of Cornell's Medical School$
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Antonio M. Jr., MD Gotto and Jennifer Moon

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501702136

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501702136.001.0001

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The Medical School in Wartime

The Medical School in Wartime

(p.79) 4 The Medical School in Wartime
Weill Cornell Medicine

Antonio M. Gotto

Jennifer Moon

Cornell University Press

This chapter describes how Dr. William Ladd's tenure as dean coincided with a period of intense societal change triggered by the Depression. The impact was felt at Cornell, as questions about the evolving relationship between medicine and society became increasingly urgent. In keeping with the rising costs, medicine as a profession had become increasingly prestigious, and the average take-home pay for a physician was about four times the national average. For most Americans, the increase in health care expenses was financially burdensome. Public discussion turned to the problem of access to health care. Some politicians began advocating for federal- and state-sponsored health insurance plans; other insurance models, such as third-party reimbursement, were also proposed. In response, Cornell University President Livingston Farrand urged graduating physicians to involve themselves in social problems.

Keywords:   Dr. William Ladd, Depression era, medicine, health care, health insurance plans, third-party reimbursement, Livingston Farrand

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