TIME VOYAGE REPORT: LONDON 1918 INFLUENZA 9
TimeVoyage Report: London 1918 Influenza
TimeVoyage Report: London 1918 Influenza
Thetrip to London was done through a time machine and involved two mainelements, the time spent and the achievement of the mission for thetrip. The trip took a total of two weeks to London and back. Themission of the trip was to explore the health situation at the timeof the influenza attack of the 1918 and 1919. The exploration of theattack of the two places will give the description of the healthsituation face by the Europeans during the 1918-1919 influenza attackin the continent. This report will provide the preparation, the tripto the two countries and the findings of the trip based on the CHEAPperspectives.
Thefirst step of the preparation was to constitute the team that wasinvolved in the most interesting health trip of our department. Theteam consisted of ten people. Two experts on public health from theHoward Hughes Medical Institute in Indiana two faculty members, twostudents, three crew members of the time machine and me, as theleader. The financing of the trip to the two European countries wassponsored by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, who also providedthe expertise to join the team as a way of enriching our knowledgewith their experience. The crew members are experts in the timemachine and carried enough batteries as a cautious measure of anyeventuality that may lead to the extension of the trip.
Thereason for the taking London as the only destination is because theinfluenza attack was more severe in Britain than in other states ofthe European continent. The final preparation was three days ofbriefing that involved training, for the trip and the mission. Thetraining involved the epidemiological facts of the influenza diseaseand the review of all the literature related to the epidemic. Inaddition, a lot of knowledge was learnt from the two experts thatHoward Hughes Medical Institute provided for the trip. The facultymembers also provided very rich information on the pandemic and theexpected safety measures we need for the voyage.
Onthe day, we made the final ten-minute briefing as a review of themission and left for London and the trip aboard the fully-functionalprototype time machine. We arrived in London in December of 1918,safely with out any eventuality of an attack by the British World War1 enemy. The next day, we engaged in an interrogative interactionwith the regional health officer in the city of London, Mr. Charles.Charles gave us the briefing on the health situation and the effectthe attack is affecting all the sectors of the country. Mr. Charlesnoted that “The influenza pandemic has persisted for the lastseveral months and was depleting the health human resources as wellas the financial resources of the country” (Charles, PersonalInterview, 1918).
Theage epidemiology for the influenza attack involving all the agessince influenza attacked all people. However, one of the attendantsat a local hospital, we interviewed, Madam Kelly noted that“Influenza affected children and women more than the men” (Kelly,Personal Interview, 1918). Kelly took us to the patient wards wherewe observed the symptoms as we were allowed to interrogate somepatients. The symptoms of the influenza includeheadacheat the central part,SystematicFever, which was highand muscular Tiredness Experiencedas general tiredness. In additionthe Jointsof victims ached regularlywith regularlyrunning noses, and sore throats. Moreover, patients had respiratorySymptoms like coughing as well as vomiting. According to
Mr.Charles Personal Interview (1918) described that the government hasacquired enough vaccines to prevent further infections. He statedthat, “we are using flu short and naval spray as the main methodsof vaccination. The treatment for the disease included seclusion onthe infected members in addition to medical provision to patients. Atthe hospital, Kelly explained the “We are usingzanamivir and oseltamiviras the neuraminidaseinhibitors.
Afterthe hospital visit and laboratory tests, we established that theinfluenza attack was caused by the H1N1 subtype of Influenza A virus.To know the origin of the virus sought the help of Mr. Charles totake us to the British health records center where we could examinethe public health officer in charge. The next day he introduced us toMr. George, who allowed us to have an examination of the records andinterview him. We established that the influenza virus was certainlythe avian. This conclusion was consistent with the assertion that thevirus was the H1N1 Influenza A (Johnson,2006).
Accordingto the experts, the perceptions of people in the beginning were notappreciating the danger of the attack and regularly ignored healthwarnings (Mr.George, Personal Interview, 1918). George explained that “thesituation could be contained if people had adhered to the initialpreventive warnings and measures.” The evolution of treatment wasstill in progress because the health department had not adopted thefinal treatment dosage.
Themain gainers were the hospitals and medical practitioners who earnconsistent income from the patients. Other gainers of the attack werethe British opponents in the World War 1 that were in progress asthey used less economic resources than the British who had to treatthe soldiers. The main losers were patients as they succumb to theinfluenza infection due to health weakness or late treatment. Thegovernment lost economically viable workforce and soldiers in theFirst World War. In addition, the British Government spent a lot ofdirect a lot of national income to combat the influenza pandemic, atthe expense of other important sectors of the economy such aseducation.
Accordingto Charles (1918), the pandemic led to limited traveling andmigration of people since the government introduced restrictivemeasures to contain the situation. Even if at this time the infectionrates were still high, the restrictive movement had helped to reducethe rates of the spread of the virus from region to region.
Wesought the help of the Mr. George to introduce us to the nationalarchives and creative center. We discovered a drawing by one of thelocal artists showing the might of the influenza virus over thepolice (Picture A).
Catherine,a student sought to know why the artist drew this picture
Catherine:What inspired the artist to draw this?
GalleryAttendant: The artist realized that the pandemic was stronger thanany military force or arms in killing
Catherine:why did the artist draw the influenza as a human being looking like adevil?
GalleryAttendant: This is because the pandemic is within the people and iskilling people. But, notice the wings included on the devil, to showthe pandemic is connected to the birds.
Thisshows how the artists interpreted the situation on the ground and thevulnerability of the people in the pandemic.
Thegovernment introduces regulations to try and combat the spread of thevirus. The most rapid response was the closure of elementary schoolsdue to the prevalence and to prevent fatal attacks (Charles, PersonalInterview, 1918). In addition, the government limited the gatheringssuch as the reduction of music hall performances to just three.
Accordingto Charles, the authorities also adopted public health education,which was significant in creating awareness of the pandemic. Inaddition, we learn that both the national British government as wellas the local authorities in Britain implemented consistent laws incollaboration with the public health authorities (Craddock &Vernick, 2010). While the vaccination became mandatory, the healthauthorities started programs that helped the vaccination andtreatment of the virus.
Aftertwo weeks in London, we concluded our operations and held a briefmeeting with Mr. Charles on the day of departure. We arrived backsafely, aboard the time machine. The information gathered on theinfluenza pandemic in London pointed out as the H1N1 influenza Avirus whose prevalence was not only in Europe but in the entireEurope. The government took viable measures to combat the pandemicthat had cost its economy and was on the brink of halting itsmilitary plans in the First World War. However, the vaccination,treatment and public educational and health programs helped thecountry to reduce the rate of the spread of the deadly disease. Thistrip was not only educative but helped us to experience the line realexperience of the situation caused by the 1918/1919 influenzapandemic.
Charles,Steven. Personal Interview, 1918.
Craddock,S., & Vernick, T. G. (2010). Influenzaand Public Health: Learning from Past Pandemics.London: Earthscan
George,Pius. Personal Interview, 1918.
Johnson,N. (2006). Britainand the 1918-19 Influenza Pandemic:ADark Epilogue.New York: Routledge
Kelly,Johanes. Personal Interview, 1918.