Professor Christopher Nichols of The Ohio State University research on the 1918 influenza pandemic has attracted a lot of attention as people question what life would be like after COVID-19.
Oregon, USA – Health experts and historians alike say the “ end ” of the COVID-19 pandemic will not be the finish line. Some changes and impacts will appear over the generations.
Oregon State University assistant professor Christopher Nichols conducted extensive research on the 1918 influenza pandemic, which killed at least 50 million people worldwide and nearly 675,000 people in the United States.
He said his work has garnered much attention since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic for the lessons it could provide in 1918.
“How do we understand our present moment, how do we understand something like this?” Description Nichols.
The two pandemics include similar preventive strategies, such as lock-in, spacing, and masks.
However, without a strong health infrastructure and mass communication resources, people in 1918 did not know the cause of many deaths.
“In some societies, people will not help their neighbors,” Nichols said. “They were very afraid of the flu,” he said.
Disinformation has been an issue as well, with some posts speculating about how the influenza virus will spread.
“The newspaper said … on the phone, so people avoided phone calls,” Nichols said.
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However, he said the political divide during COVID-19 was much less present.
“There was no influenza policy in 1918,” Nichols said. And it wasn’t a deliberate disinformation campaign like we have seen on social media. This is really different, really sly. And there is no historical precedent that helps us deal with that, other than continuing to talk about it. – that they.”
After the 1918 pandemic, health was no longer the same. Virus variants persisted.
“This led to seasonal flu as we know it … that’s exactly what will happen with COVID,” Nichols said. “[What’s different now]The ability to scale up vaccines, which we have done, amazingly, is the fastest in world history. “
He said the post-COVID era is likely to witness similar cultural trends to the 1920s: a renewed joy and appreciation for the events and gatherings that have been suspended. The 1920s saw a social renaissance of music, dance, movies, and sporting events.
Nichols said the same contract is also a warning.
We can also see the downside: xenophobia, isolation, and disruptive politics.
This included the rise of the Ku Klux Klan in national politics.
One factor in the xenophobic trend in the United States at the time was the name “Spanish Flu,” which meant that some people were the source or more likely to contract the disease. Nichols said this parallels anti-Asian sentiment with COVID today.
The booing that was said about the fact that it was the “Chinese flu”.
For many countries, including Germany and Canada, the 1918 pandemic marked a turning point in health care reform, with the shift toward more detailed models.
“The United States has largely not set up federal structures to deal with healthcare or the upcoming pandemic, so this is going to be a question people will have to ask in the future.”
He said many companies will likely change their marketing tactics to serve people’s new priorities after COVID, just as advertisers did in 1920.
“You are trying to live your life to the fullest possible, and you have to believe that part of it comes from catching the epidemic.”
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