The Spanish Flu - Response to the Influenza of 1918 Essay

The Spanish Flu - Response to the Influenza of 1918 Essay

Length: 1998 words (5.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Response to the Influenza of 1918

At the time, the Influenza of 1918 was called the Spanish Flu. Spain was not involved in the expanding great war (i.e., World War I) and therefore was not censoring it's press. However, Germany, Britain, and America were censoring their newspapers for anything that would lower morale. Therefore, Spain was the first country to publish accounts of the pandemic (Barry 171 and Furman 326), even though the pandemic most likely started in either France or the United States. It was also unique in it's deadliness; it “killed more people in a year than the Black Death of the Middle Ages killed in a century” (Barry 5). In the United States, the experience during the pandemic varied from location to location. Some areas were better off whereas some were hit horribly by the disease, such as Philadelphia. It also came as a shock to many, though some predicted it's coming; few thought it would strike with the speed and lethality that it did. Though the inherent qualities of the flu enabled its devastation of the country, the response to the flu was in part responsible as well. The response to the pandemic was reasonable, given the dire situation, but not sufficient enough to prevent unnecessary death and hardship, especially in Philadelphia.

In 1918, things were not going well for the United States in the influenza epidemic. The disease was spreading rapidly and killing many. The United States was also at war, and it was a struggle to keep fighting with the disease on their hands. Germany had also been affected by the disease, and it certainly caused them a great deal of trouble. But the suffering of Germany's army was not enough to alleviate America's difficulty in fighting the war. Influenza was ...


... middle of paper ...


...andemic: The Influenza of 1918. Cambridge: Cambridge University, 1989. Print
Use: I will use this as an extra source to supplement The Great Influenza and get more detailed information about Philadelphia, as well as Sans Francisco if I feel it would be useful.

Secondary
Furman, Bess. A Profile of the United States Public Health Service 1798-1948. District of Columbia: National Institutes of Health, 1973. Print.
Use: I will use this for background information on what was going on during the outbreak in the Public Health Service. I will also use it to help me see what I need to research in further detail.

Primary
"Will Shut Shops in South Phila. to Fight Influenza." Philadelphia Evening Bulletin [Philadelphia] 9 Oct. 1918: n. pag. Print.
Use: This is a long article detailing the ways or plans that the city of Philadelphia might use fight the influenza.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Influenza Epidemic of 1918 Essay

- The epidemic began at around the end of the first World War and was the most devastating epidemic in recorded world history. Some symptoms of the influenza included muscle pains, sore throat, headache, fever, glandular disturbances, eye aberrations, heart action slowing, and depression of all bodily functions and reactions. The flu is highly contagious and spreads around easily whenever an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. This global disaster was nicknamed the “Spanish Flu,” or “La Grippe.” The nickname of the Spanish Flu came from one of the earliest countries to be hit hard by influenza; eight million people in Spain were killed in the May of 1918....   [tags: World War I, Devastating Epidemic, History]

Powerful Essays
1223 words (3.5 pages)

The 1918 Influenza Epidemic Essay

- What would later become one of the deadliest plagues the world had ever seen started innocuously enough in the spring of 1918 spreading through populations on both sides of the Atlantic. Remarkable for its highly infectious nature, the spring strain was relatively non-lethal, rarely killing infected individuals (Kolata, 1999). Thus little more than average attention was paid to the precursor of a virus that would eventually kill between twenty-one and one-hundred million individuals worldwide (Barry, 2004)....   [tags: Disease ]

Powerful Essays
1587 words (4.5 pages)

The Spanish Influenza in Missouri Essay

- The Spanish Influenza in Missouri Reports of the Spanish Influenza continue to bombard us from St. Louis, Missouri, as inhabitants of that fine city take many precautions to safeguard themselves and their families against this incendiary malady currently sweeping our great nation. At a time of war when our country needs our strength the most it is important that we fight this Influenza head on, taking whatever actions necessary to eradicate it from our fine shores. Let us take a page from St. Louis's book on how to prevent this illness from spreading....   [tags: Journalism St. Louis, Missouri Health Essays]

Free Essays
797 words (2.3 pages)

Essay on Avian Influenza: Type A Virus Infection in Humans

- Introduction The avian influenza virus is a type A influenza virus which is normally found in birds. Wild birds are the natural hosts for all known influenza type A viruses. This includes waterfowl, gulls and shorebirds. Ironically wild birds do not normally show symptoms of the influenza virus however when avian influenza type A viruses are passed onto domesticated birds, they are extremely susceptible to highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) with a mortality rate of 90% to 100%1. Avian H2, H5, H6, H7, H8, H9 and H10 are the subtypes that are the most likely to be transferred to humans....   [tags: birds, HPAI, pandemic, H3N2, H1N1, virus]

Powerful Essays
3324 words (9.5 pages)

The 1918 Spanish Influenza Pandemic Essay

- Influenza is defined as an acute, commonly epidemic disease, occurring in several forms, caused by numerous rapidly mutating viral strains and characterized by respiratory symptoms and general prostration. Spanish flu was more than just a normal epidemic, it was a pandemic. Epidemics affect many people at the same time in areas where the disease doesn’t normally occur. A pandemic is an epidemic on a national, international, or global scale. The Spanish flu was different from the seasonal flu in one especially frightening way, there was an unusually high death rate among healthy adults aged 15 to 34 and lowered the life expectancy by more than ten years....   [tags: Health, Epidemic Deasease]

Powerful Essays
1477 words (4.2 pages)

Essay on The Flu is an Imminent Pandemic

- Flu: The Imminent Pandemic Influenza is an everyday disease that affects thousands worldwide. Despite its reputation as a mundane sickness, the flu (especially the avian flu) is widely touted by experts as the propagator of the next deadly pandemic. The secret to this virus’ lethality is its antigenic shifting, leading to increased virulence and transmission factors. If one strain of a super flu begins circulating, millions of lives and billions of dollars will be lost. Only by preparing a national and worldwide response to this threat will we be able to combat this imminent pandemic....   [tags: Biology Medical Influenza Disease]

Powerful Essays
1212 words (3.5 pages)

The Influenza of 1918 Essay

- After World War I had ended, American citizens celebrated with joy as they welcomed the American soldiers back home. What Americans did not realize was that the end of World War I was just the beginning of a year of devastation. Upon returning home from the fronts, the soldiers were not only welcomed home by the citizens of America, but also introduced a new threat that led to much desolation throughout the American nation. Following the return of the army, reported cases of the flu had significantly risen....   [tags: plague of flu virus]

Powerful Essays
1263 words (3.6 pages)

Essay about Spanish Influenza Outbreak, 1918

- Spanish Influenza Outbreak, 1918 In the midst of perfect health, in a circumscribed community... the first case of influenza would occur, and then within the next few hours or days a large proportion- and occasionally every single individual of that community- would be stricken down with the same type of febrile illness, the rate of spread from one to another being remarkable... Barrack rooms which the day before had been full of bustle and life, would now converted wholesale into one great sick room, the number of sick developing so rapidly that hospitals were within a day or two so overfull that fresh admissions were impossible....   [tags: American America History]

Free Essays
1726 words (4.9 pages)

The Influenza Essay

- The Influenza It was time to bring in the crops--this was one of the best years I'd ever had. For the first time in a long time, I was looking forward to getting into the field to gather the crop I'd worked so hard to grow. A farmer's life is never easy, but this was my year. I'd managed to get more land, and I was way past the days of just putting food on my family's table. The fall of 1918 turned out to be one of the worst times of my life. I had a rather large family--two boys and two girls....   [tags: Spanish Influenza Essays]

Free Essays
854 words (2.4 pages)

New York and the Spanish Influenza Essays

- New York and the Spanish Influenza NEW YORK--Although public health officials, including the Surgeon General, have been reluctant to declare an epidemic of crisis proportions, indications that something more than a mild flu season was at hand began to appear as far back as May when reports from China, the Front lines, and other places around the world, were telling of large numbers of people becoming suddenly ill.1 Few deaths were acknowledged in those early reports and most reports indicated the illness only lasted a few days....   [tags: Influenza Epidemics Health Essays]

Free Essays
1342 words (3.8 pages)