Connect with us

Health

Accent: How Sudbury coped with the Spanish flu 100 years ago – The Sudbury Star

Published

on


Remembering the 1918 Influenza Pandemic

This 1918 board of health influenza poster in Alberta would have been typical for the Spanish flu pandemic. In Sudbury, the pandemic infected thousands and killed hundreds. File photo

Submitted / GLENBOW ARCHIVES

“’FLU’ EPIDEMIC BRINGS CLOSURE ALL ASSEMBLIES – Civic Authorities in Endeavor To Cope With Disease,” was the front-page headline for the Sudbury Star on Oct. 16, 1918.

The 1918 Flu Pandemic (1918-1920), also known as the “Spanish Flu” or “La Grippe,” spread to Canada that September and Sudbury had its first case by early October. While staying at home and practising social distancing, take some time to learn about Sudbury’s experience with a pandemic a little over 101 years ago.

The 1918 influenza pandemic was caused by an H1N1 virus. The exact place of origin is unknown but the virus started during the last months of the First World War and quickly spread around the world.

Spain was not the first country to experience the virus, but, as a neutral country during the war, officials there reported openly about the disease, which may have led to the virus being called the “Spanish Flu.”

Globally, the virus infected about one-third of the population with an estimated 50 million deaths.

By Oct. 9, 1918, there were at least 12 cases of the disease in Sudbury with eight of them classified as “more severe.” All cases were traced to outside sources, so the virus was not yet community spread.

The Sudbury Board of Health recommended the public to isolate anyone infected, maintain health with exercise in the fresh air, proper nutrition and sleep, washing hands prior to eating, avoiding crowds and not kissing anyone.

It was also recommended that “the hands should be kept away from the mouth and nose at all times … The nose and mouth should always be covered with a handkerchief in the act of coughing or sneezing.”

Anyone caring for someone infected was not to touch their face or mouth with their hands while handling a patient or infected items. In addition to many other stipulations, caregivers were to wash their hands with soap, water and a nail brush, and hold their hands for five minutes in antiseptic solution before interacting with healthy people.


Huron women between the ages of 16 and 35 suffered the highest mortality rates for the Spanish Influenza. They tended to be the caregivers in the home and community. Submitted

jpg, GS

Just three days after the virus was first reported in Sudbury, St. Joseph’s Hospital was full, except for a few beds in the public ward.  Eventually, Sudbury High School was transformed into a temporary emergency hospital to be used if needed.

The province began to consider allowing the purchase of small quantities of alcohol for medicinal purposes without a doctor’s note. A local milk shortage, which started just before the virus arrived in town, was exacerbated, in part, by the flu.

The board of health asked Sudburians to stay home if infected and to leave the hospital for those without homes in town.

Within four more days, the number of infected increased to 500 to 800, and five of those with the virus had died due to pneumonia.

Local doctors found that while about 85 per cent of cases were very mild, 15 per cent were severe.

On Oct. 16, 1918, all public places in town were closed, including schools, churches, theatres, the public library, lodges, the market place, etc. and the CNR station platforms were limited to only those with necessary business.

The Sudbury-Copper Cliff Electric Railway was required to clean its cars and fumigate them daily and passenger capacity was cut in half.  Restaurants remained open, but with a limit of 25 patrons. The post office also remained open, but loitering or congregating in the post office, street corners, office buildings, etc. was forbidden as was spitting in public places.

Fortunately, isolation had the desired effect. While there were many new cases, within a few days the number of new daily cases decreased.  By October 23, 1918, there were more 1,000 cases in town and 41 deaths from the virus since the beginning of the month.

An experimental inoculation was sent to Sudbury doctors from Toronto to administer 5,000 doses.

By early November, there were around 1,500 to 1,800 cases in Sudbury.  There were also about 1,100 to 1,200 cases “among the mining towns of the International Nickel Co.”  Copper Cliff had suffered six deaths from the virus by this time and Burwash Industrial Farm had 16 deaths by mid-November, but many other towns were spared. Garson stopped all incoming and outgoing traffic and as of Nov. 2, 1918, had no cases of the disease.

On November 10, 1918, the places of worship were re-opened in Sudbury and the following day most public places. The public library and schools opened a week later.

There were still new cases but they were much milder and the numbers fell by November 20, 1918, to less 10 new cases a day.  By early December, Sudbury had experienced about 2,000 cases with around 65 local deaths from the disease in addition to an unknown number of deaths of people brought to town for treatment.

These numbers are approximate as it was not required in 1918 to report cases of the disease and by late November, statistics were no longer included locally in media reports.

From the beginning of October to the end of December 1918, death records indicated around 190 deaths in Sudbury due to “Influenza,” “La Grippe” or “Spanish Influenza.”

(There were cases of influenza or la grippe in town at this time that were not the Spanish Influenza, so some of these deaths may have been from the seasonal flu. There were about 26 death records in Sudbury that listed specifically “Spanish Influenza” as a cause of death from October to December 1918 but media reports were much higher so it is  possible physicians sometimes shortened it to “influenza.”  During the same time period, “pneumonia” was also recorded locally as a cause of death in a number of cases.)

Death records continued to list Spanish Influenza as a cause of death in Sudbury until the end of February with an additional eight deaths.  January to March 1919 also included 31 deaths due to “Influenza” in town and one death due to “Influenza” in June in Sudbury.

There was also one individual in 1920 listed as died of the “Spanish Influenza” in Sudbury and at least 67 Sudburians who died of “Influenza” or “La Grippe.”

There was also one additional death of a person in Sudbury with the official cause listed as “Spanish Influenza” in 1921 and at least three people who died of “Influenza” in the town the same year.

To learn more about the 1918 influenza pandemic, visit the City of Greater Sudbury Archives website at www.greatersudbury.ca/archives.  Click on “Search our Holdings” and follow the links to Archeion.

To listen to firsthand accounts of the 1918 flu from the radio program Memories and Music, type Jack Sauerbrei or Jim Vanderbeck in the search bar and click on the result.

(Or visit https://www.archeion.ca/jack-sauerbrei or https://www.archeion.ca/jim-vanderbeck. Jack Sauerbrei briefly shares his memories of the 1918 pandemic and Jim Vanderbeck mentions it in passing in regards to the deaths of two of his siblings.)

To learn about a First World War Soldier who died of the 1918 influenza, type Royal Canadian Legion Dr. Fred Starr Branch 76 in the search bar and click on the first result.  Then click on Book of Remembrance (on the left-hand side) and then Reference Guide for the Book of Remembrance.  Click on the Reference Guide and do a keyword search for Bonhomme, Edward.  (Or visit https://www.archeion.ca/uploads/r/city-of-greater-sudbury-archives/0/e/a/0ead56772442d906f52f8add99986c8796da800859c8ad337733c0953ed817d4/Book_of_Remembrance_Reference_Guide_p1-15.pdf and search for Bonhomme, Edward.)

Shanna Fraser is the city archivist for the City of Greater Sudbury.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Health

Another COVID-19 case reported in northern New Brunswick on Saturday – Deloraine Times

Published

on


CAMPBELLTON, N.B. — People from a city in northern New Brunswick lined up outside testing centres Saturday, anxiously waiting to find out if they’ve been exposed to COVID-19.

Health officials have been focusing on Campbellton, N.B., since earlier in the week when it was learned that a health-care professional who contracted the novel coronavirus outside the province didn’t self-isolate after returning to New Brunswick.

article continues below

Public Health officials confirmed another new case in Zone 5, the Campbellton region, Saturday — bringing to nine the number of active cases in the area in just over a week.

The new case, which is under investigation, is an individual in their 70s.

To date, there have been 129 confirmed cases in New Brunswick and 120 people have recovered from their illness.

Three people are hospitalized and there are no patients in an intensive care unit.

Campbellton Mayor Stephanie Anglehart-Paulin said people were waiting about 15 minutes in the lineups to be tested, while seniors could call the 811 Tele-Care line to make an appointment to avoid the lines.

She said people are not happy that a health-care professional would put the public at risk.

“People have been pretty hateful and nasty on social media,” she said.

The mayor said she was embarrassed by many of the comments and urged people to help each other and limit their contacts for the next two weeks.

“The man is human and I don’t think it’s my place to judge him. His professional association will judge what they have to judge if there was any wrongdoing done,” she said.

Premier Blaine Higgs has criticized the worker at the centre of the cluster as “irresponsible.” He said this week that information had been passed to the RCMP and suggested the individual could be charged with violating public health orders.

On Friday, a spokeswoman for the New Brunswick RCMP confirmed that the force is looking into the matter.

Chief medical officer of health Dr. Jennifer Russell said people need to show understanding, forgiveness and compassion during this pandemic.

“Please remember that COVID-19 brings out many emotions in us,” said Russell. “It causes many of us to experience feelings of confusion, anxiety, fear and grief. Some may also be angry. It is completely normal to feel these feelings when we face situations that are beyond our control.”

Gilles Lanteigne, president and CEO of the Vitalite Health Network confirmed the health-care professional thought to be patient zero in the outbreak has been suspended from work indefinitely after coming into contact with more than 100 people at the Campbellton Regional Hospital.

Elective surgeries have been suspended, and ambulances are being diverted to another hospital. Zone 5 has been moved back to the “orange” phase of the province’s reopening plan, with previous restrictions reinstated.

“We can get through this. It all will be fine,” Anglehart-Paulin said.

“We’ve got 14 days they tell us to hold our breath, so we’re going to hold our breath for another 14 days.”

Russell said everyone must be vigilant and self monitor for symptoms, regardless if they have been recently tested for COVID-19.

Before the Campbellton area cases, the province had gone two weeks without new cases and was actively reopening many businesses and services.

The latest cases follow a protest earlier in the month by more than 400 people from Campbellton and the Quebec communities of Pointe-a-la-Croix and Listuguj First Nation, calling for a “bubble” to be created between them.

Anglehart-Paulin said the flood of emails she was getting in support of opening the border suddenly stopped when the latest cases were reported.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 30, 2020.

— By Kevin Bissett in Fredericton.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Health

Another COVID-19 case reported in northern New Brunswick on Saturday – CHAT News Today

Published

on


To date, there have been 129 confirmed cases in New Brunswick and 120 people have recovered from their illness. 

Three people are hospitalized and there are no patients in an intensive care unit.

Campbellton Mayor Stephanie Anglehart-Paulin said people were waiting about 15 minutes in the lineups to be tested, while seniors could call the 811 Tele-Care line to make an appointment to avoid the lines.

She said people are not happy that a health-care professional would put the public at risk.

“People have been pretty hateful and nasty on social media,” she said.

The mayor said she was embarrassed by many of the comments and urged people to help each other and limit their contacts for the next two weeks.

“The man is human and I don’t think it’s my place to judge him. His professional association will judge what they have to judge if there was any wrongdoing done,” she said.

Premier Blaine Higgs has criticized the worker at the centre of the cluster as “irresponsible.” He said this week that information had been passed to the RCMP and suggested the individual could be charged with violating public health orders.

On Friday, a spokeswoman for the New Brunswick RCMP confirmed that the force is looking into the matter.

Chief medical officer of health Dr. Jennifer Russell said people need to show understanding, forgiveness and compassion during this pandemic.

“Please remember that COVID-19 brings out many emotions in us,” said Russell. “It causes many of us to experience feelings of confusion, anxiety, fear and grief. Some may also be angry. It is completely normal to feel these feelings when we face situations that are beyond our control.”

Gilles Lanteigne, president and CEO of the Vitalite Health Network confirmed the health-care professional thought to be patient zero in the outbreak has been suspended from work indefinitely after coming into contact with more than 100 people at the Campbellton Regional Hospital.

Elective surgeries have been suspended, and ambulances are being diverted to another hospital. Zone 5 has been moved back to the “orange” phase of the province’s reopening plan, with previous restrictions reinstated.

“We can get through this. It all will be fine,” Anglehart-Paulin said.

“We’ve got 14 days they tell us to hold our breath, so we’re going to hold our breath for another 14 days.”

Russell said everyone must be vigilant and self monitor for symptoms, regardless if they have been recently tested for COVID-19.

Before the Campbellton area cases, the province had gone two weeks without new cases and was actively reopening many businesses and services.

The latest cases follow a protest earlier in the month by more than 400 people from Campbellton and the Quebec communities of Pointe-a-la-Croix and Listuguj First Nation, calling for a “bubble” to be created between them.

Anglehart-Paulin said the flood of emails she was getting in support of opening the border suddenly stopped when the latest cases were reported.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 30, 2020.

— By Kevin Bissett in Fredericton.

The Canadian Press

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Health

344 new coronavirus cases, 41 deaths in Ontario as total cases rise to 27210

Published

on

Ontario reported 344 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday, bringing the provincial total to 27,210.

The death toll has risen to 2,230, as 41 more deaths were reported.

Meanwhile, 20,983 people have recovered from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, which is 77 per cent of cases.

Ontario has completed 680,687 tests so far for the virus. This is up 18,525 tests from the previous day, which is the highest number of tests completed in a 24-hour period in almost three weeks.

The province has previously said it has a testing capacity of over 20,000 daily tests. Ontario is set to reveal a new coronavirus testing strategy Friday to gauge phased reopening.

Friday’s report marks an increase of 1.3 per cent in total cumulative cases. That figure has mostly hovered between 1.1 and 1.8 over the past week.

Ontario has 826 patients (down by seven) hospitalized due to COVID-19, with 129 patients in an intensive care unit (down by eight) and 100 patients in ICUs on a ventilator (up by six).

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 1,625 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario, which is an increase of 34 deaths, and there are 123 current outbreaks. Six health-care workers in long-term care homes have died.

Ontario officials have said there may be a discrepancy between overall deaths and deaths at long-term care homes due to how the province’s health database system, called iPHIS, is tracking data and how the Ministry of Long-Term Care is tracking data.

The ministry also indicated there are currently 1,476 confirmed cases among long-term care residents and 1,113 cases among staff.

Health-care workers in Ontario account for 4,634 of the total reported cases, which is 17 per cent of the infected population.

Greater Toronto Area public health units account for 65 per cent of all cases in the province.

Here is a breakdown of Ontario cases by gender and age:

  • 11,818 people are male (43.4 per cent).
  • 15,162 people are female (55.7 per cent).
  • 948 people are 19 and under (3.5 per cent).
  • 6,992 people are 20 to 39 (25.7 per cent).
  • 8,310 people are 40 to 59 (30.5 per cent).
  • 5,551 people are 60 to 79 (20.4 per cent).
  • 5,394 people are 80 and over (19.8 per cent).
  • 230 cases did not specify male or female and 15 cases had an unknown age.

There are 13,351 people currently under investigation awaiting test results.

The newly reported numbers are valid as of 2 p.m. Thursday for Toronto and Ottawa public health units, and 4 p.m. for the rest of the province.

Source: – cjoy.com

Source link

Edited By Harry Miller

Continue Reading

Trending