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A History Of Pandemics

A History Of Pandemics

  • A Pandemic is defined as the proliferation of a disease over the whole country or the entire world.
  • Diseases and illnesses have troubled humanity since the earliest days, but can now occur with increased frequency due to rapid urbanization and globalism. The death toll numbers in Pandemics over the ages are estimates based on available research, and may not be accurate.
  • Earlier it was believed that Pandemics are God’s punishment on humans, but now, as our understanding has increased, the response to these outbreaks has improved.

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  • The original use of the word Quarantine was the act of anchoring a ship arrived in Venice, Italy, for 40 days before landing.
  • Infectiousness of any disease is measured by the reproduction number (R0, or R naught). For example, Smallpox has an R0 of 6 whereas Measles...

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Transmissible diseases existed during humankind’s hunter-gatherer days, but the shift to agrarian life 10,000 years ago created communities that made epidemics more possible.
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The Third Cholera Pandemic (1852-1860)

Cholera is a bacterial infection and is mainly contracted through food and water.

The largest cholera outbreak originated in India and spread beyond its borders, killing about 23 000 people in Britain alone.

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It is often referred to incorrectly as the “Spanish flu.” Between 50 and 100 million people are thought to have died, representing as much as 5% of the world’s population. Half a billion people were infected.
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