district surgeon, noun phrase

Also with initial capitals. A medical doctor appointed by the government to serve a particular district in supervising vaccinations, post-mortems, and the general health-care of people for whose welfare the state is responsible.
Note:
Originally privately contracted by the magistrate of a district, district surgeons were first appointed by the Cape colonial government in the 1820s.
1831 S. Afr. Almanac & Dir. 64Instructions for District Surgeons. Colonial Office Cape of Good Hope 29th July 1829...He must visit the Prison daily.
1831 S. Afr. Almanac & Dir. 66The district surgeon shall be obliged to Vaccinate in his District, gratis.
1882 J. Nixon Among Boers 69He had been district surgeon for six years, and said that he had only seen one case of phthisis among the whole population during that period.
1921 W.C. Scully Harrow 35Dr. Terence Ryan, the district surgeon..had brought his kind heart, his irascible temper and his brogue from the south of Ireland some thirty years previously.
1922 S.G. Millin Adam’s Rest 69There was a District Surgeon in Adam’s Rest, but he was old and lazy and generally a little drunk.
1958 E.H. Burrows Hist. of Medicine 87Dr. Barry modified this situation by having promulgated in 1823 ‘Regulations for the Guidance of the Respective District Surgeons’...The district surgeon, ‘being also considered as District Apothecary’, was to sell all medicines..to anyone demanding them...Apart from this, he received free medicines for his attendance upon police officers, prisoners, convicts and paupers.
1982 E. Prov. Herald 8 June 1Dr Neil Aggett might be alive today if he had seen a district surgeon while in detention...In terms of the Prisons Act and Public Health Act, district surgeons did not need police permission to see detainees.
1986 Reader’s Digest Family Guide to Law 64Anyone assaulted by the police should see a doctor as soon as possible. If he is in custody he should ask for a district surgeon.
1989 C. Rickard in Weekly Mail 23 Feb. 5He said when lawyers heard allegations of torture in detention, they should speak to doctors about the claim as district surgeons had a duty to intervene in such a case.
Also with initial capitals. A medical doctor appointed by the government to serve a particular district in supervising vaccinations, post-mortems, and the general health-care of people for whose welfare the state is responsible.
Derivatives:
Hence district surgeoncy noun phrase, the office of district surgeon.
1870 E. Prov. Herald 15 Aug.The district surgeoncy of Stockenstroom was lately offered to Dr. Bird, of Dordrecht, but declined by that gentleman.
1958 E.H. Burrows Hist. of Medicine 213Coolies were imported in the 1860’s and one of the clauses of the agreement reached with the Indian Government insisted upon regular medical attention for them. This provision led to the appointment of Indian Medical Officers to ‘Circles’ of territory corresponding roughly to the various district surgeoncies.
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