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Flu The Great Pandemic of 1918: State by State

Discussion in 'Survival Medicine' started by E.L., May 6, 2007.

  1. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member


    The following was under Texas.

    <HR width="98%" SIZE=1>

    <A id=tx name=tx>Texas State Summit
    Opening Remarks Prepared for Delivery
    By the Honorable Mike Leavitt
    Secretary of Health and Human Services
    March 27, 2006
    The Great Pandemic also touched Texas.
    Reports of pandemic fears preceded the disease into Texas by about two weeks. But by September 23, there were definite accounts of it near Austin and Dallas. On October 4th, 35 counties were reporting the presence of influenza, with anywhere from one to 2,000 cases per county.
    The pandemic kept rising. The victims kept falling. And people kept searching for ways to contain the pandemic and sustain themselves through it.
    El Paso imposed a quarantine.
    The Dallas Morning News declared that surviving the pandemic required "medical attention, good nursing, fresh air, nutritious food, plenty of water, and cheerful surroundings."
    The Texas State Board of Health offered schools several suggestions on ways to prevent flu outbreaks.
    The Board wrote:
    "Every day . . . disinfectant should be scattered over the floor and swept. All woodwork, desks, chairs, tables and doors should be wiped off with a cloth wet with linseed, kerosene and turpentine. Every pupil must have at all times a clean handkerchief and it must not be laid on top of the desk. Spitting on the floor, sneezing, or coughing, except behind a handkerchief, should be sufficient grounds for suspension of a pupil. A pupil should not be allowed to sit in a draft. A pupil with wet feet or wet clothing should not be permitted to stay at school."
    But despite those efforts, the pandemic took a terrible toll on Texas. By the end of October, more than 106,000 Texans in the state's urban centers had been afflicted. More than 2,100 had died.
    The echoes of fear and loss resounded loudly—so loudly that when 221 cases of influenza were diagnosed in Dallas over a year later (January 25th, 1920), the State Director of Public Health sent an urgent message to Surgeon General Rupert Blue advising him of the situation and asking for his guidance on any other control measures other than the general ones already being applied. The Surgeon General sent back simply, "Service has no additional measure to suggest."
    When it comes to pandemics, there is no rational basis to believe that the early years of the 21st century will be different than the past. If a pandemic strikes, it will come to Texas.
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