Accomplishing A Mission

Charles H. Frantz, M.D.


This issue of the Bulletin marks the beginning of its fifth year of publication. In Volume I, Number 1, published in October 1961, I wrote:

"A New Venture"

"The surgical and prosthetic treatment of the child amputee has now fully emerged as a specialized area of knowledge and practice-a specialty drawing upon the general fields of orthopedic surgery, pediatrics, and prosthetics .

"The nature and diversity of the problem is such, however, that the experiences of one individual or one clinic are necessarily limited to segments of the total child amputee population. This is particularly true of the more complex and challenging types of amputations and congenital anomalies.

"Meeting the challenge of this situation was one of the goals of the cooperative child amputee research program established in 1958. Through this medium, selected and active child amputee clinics could each contribute their experiences to a common fund of knowledge which would then be available to all.

"As a further step toward this goal, the Inter-Clinic Information Bulletin has now been instituted. This Bulletin is designed to provide information to cooperating clinics and others relative to standards of practice, the exchange of ideas, surgical problems, and the development of new components. Each monthly issue will contain a major contribution by the chief of one of the participating clinics. The Bulletin may also serve as a forum for raising and answering questions concerning specific problems .

"We sincerely hope that you will enjoy this publication and that it will achieve the goals for which it was created."

The print order for Volume I, Number 1 of the Inter-Clinic Information Bulletin was for 100 copies, which were intended primarily for distribution to the fourteen accredited cooperating clinics then participating in the program.

Progress

Now, four years later, the Child Amputee Research Program involves 20 clinics, with the addition of several other well-qualified groups anticipated in the near future. The Inter-Clinic Information Bulletin print order is currently 1600 copies per month and rising steadily. Direct mailings involve 526 copies to 265 individuals and institutions in the continental United States of America plus Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico and Guam; and 69 copies to 16 foreign countries. In addition, 535 copies of each issue go to the American Orthotics and Prosthetics Association for distribution to the entire membership of that organization, which is primarily domestic, but includes some members abroad. Also, 400 copies sent to the World Rehabilitation Fund, Inc. monthly, are distributed on a world-wide basis.

We now feel that the Inter-Clinic Information Bulletin has justified itself as a valuable medium for the dissemination of information garnered from the experiences of the clinic chiefs and that it is achieving some of the goals for which it was created. It has also seemed to us that the attention focused on the treatment of the child amputee has attracted the interest of engineers and designers; and stimulated research to solve the many difficult problems in our field. We are confident that the value and influence of the Bulletin will continue to grow in the years ahead.

We are indebted to the clinic chiefs for their loyalty and cooperation in fulfilling their commitments so enthusiastically. To Doctor Fishman at New York University goes much credit for the organization of the Bulletin. Mr. Hector W. Kay deserves our special "thanks" for his superb efforts in editing each issue.

Charles H. Frantz, M.D. is the Chairman Subcommittee on Child Prosthetics Problems Grand Rapids, Michigan