Medicine: Vive la R

Across France last week, doctors were trying to make a monkey of the government-controlled health-insurance system. A patient might have nothing more serious than a cut finger, but the doctor would fill in his form showing "grave lacerations, permanent incapacity probable.'' A Paris arrondissement was thrown into uproar by the report of a case of yaws, which proved to be a physician's whimsical entry for la grippe. In many areas, coroners had to invoke police aid to force doctors to make out death certificates—and quite a few were signed "Paul Bacon." Who was Monsieur Bacon? None other than France's Minister of...

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