In 1694 the apothecaries had increased from 114 to nearly 1000, and many of them, having acquired a knowledge of the uses of medicine, began to prescribe medicines for their customers and to assume the functions of the physician, who retorted in 1697 by establishing dispensaries, where medicines could be procured at their intrinsic value, or at cost price.
The assistants employed at these dispensaries after a time appear to have gone into business on their own account, and in this way the dispensing chemists, as a class, appear to have originated.
In 1909 the number of missionaries (including wives) was 113; organized churches, 194; members and adherents, 21,085; schools, 135; pupils, 7042; hospitals and dispensaries, 17; patients treated, 6865; subscriptions raised from Friends in Great Britain and Ireland, £26,689, besides £3245 received in the fields of work.
He opened dispensaries in London and Bristol and was keenly interested in medicine.
Finally, the government sustains about two score of penal establishments, reform schools, hospitals, dispensaries and asylums, which are scattered all over the island, - every town of any considerable size having one or more of these charities.