West Virginia Osteopathic Society

Daily State Journal
February 19, 1900



Matter will decide if W. E. Ely Has Violated the State Medical Law.

This afternoon, in criminal court, there was a case begun that will attract the attention of the medical profession in all parts of the state, as its result will probably decide whether treatment by oesteopathy is practicing medicine, in the strictest technical construction of the term. This case will act as a test in the matter and is brought for that purpose, chiefly. The State Medical Board, actuated by the law which is that no one shall practice medicine in this state without a license approved by the Board, stands in the relation of prosecuting witness in this case, and the matter is in the hands of a committee of which Dr. Percy Goff, of Clarksburg, is chairman. Dr. Goff is in court in the interest of the action.

The case is brought against W. E. Ely, of this city, who practices osteopathy, which he claims is not the practice of medicine. He has no medical license, and the fight is to require osteopathists to secure such license by examination, as has been done in some cases. The doctors claims that treatment by osteopathy is the practice of medicine, and this variance of opinion brings about the action now on trial.

The indictment was found against Ely at the September term of court, and charges him with practicing medicine without a license or having been passed by the State Medical Board.

There are a number of witnesses called on both sides, all of w[ho]m are from this city's most prominent people. The case is interesting to say the least, and if it goes against the osteopathist he will be compelled to stop the practice in this state under his present method.

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