The Spanish flu struck the world in 1918, and it was in three pandemic waves. During the First World War, the fight was fought on two fronts – the pandemic of Spanish flu has taken more lives than the war, and it was the biggest pandemic in history. One specific nation has lost a lot because of patriotism, but they’ve learned that social distancing and canceling mass events is a good measure of defense against the spread of infection.
Shockingly, almost a third of the world population was infected, and around 50 million people died. It was the first pandemic that was caused by a virus from the A H1N1 virus group, although it was believed in the beginning that a bacteria caused it.
It was called the Spanish flu because of the media; journalists informed the agency that a virus is spreading in Madrid, and the agency called it like that.
What were the symptoms?
The people infected by this virus had symptoms that a first was similar to the regular flu, but they quickly became severe. The people had trouble breathing, they’ve had a fever, but they’ve also had dark spots on their skin. Some patients died after a few days, and some of them even in only a couple of hours. It was different than other viruses because also young and healthy people could be affected by it.
What happened in the USA?
There was a parade in September 1918 in Philadelphia that was promoting issuing government bonds to finance US military involvement in the Great War. It was supposed to be canceled because there were already some cases of Spanish flu at the American soil, but it wasn’t.
This parade made this city one of the most affected ones, with half a million of people infected by the virus, and 16.000 dead in just six months.
The parade wasn’t the only reason for the spread of the virus, but it would be much better if they’ve canceled it and save lives like that.