The subject of boarding-out is not in any way a new one. In 1864 Dr. (now Sir Arthur) Mitchell described very fully the condition of the insane in private dwellings in Scotland, and while exposing the many abuses that then existed, showed also that, under proper regulation, domestic care for a certain class of lunatics possesses many advantages, and urged that in it there could be found one very suitable method of providing against the accumulation of chronic insane in asylums. Since that time the subject has always been more or less prominently receiving attention from those who are concerned in providing for the insane. Therefore I cannot hope now to lay before you any fresh facts in reference to it. My object is rather, in the short time at my command, to draw attention to some of the outstanding features of the system, in the hope of raising a discussion and eliciting the opinions of members regarding it, especially the opinions of our friends from the other side of the border and from Ireland, where the conditions influencing the provision made for the insane are somewhat different from ours, and where boarding-out has so far not been practised to the same extent as in Scotland.
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