Wednesday, January 26

How were the vaccines that tried to beat the 1918 Flu pandemic

The 1918 flu affected millions of people around the world, leaving at the end of it, about 500 million people infected. The vaccines that were created were not as effective for various reasons, unlike the Covid-19 vaccine.

Were there vaccinations during the 1918 flu?

One factor to take into account is that, during this pandemic, no vaccine was developed, or at least one that was effective. This was because it was believed that the infection was caused by bacteria and not a virus, as is known.

The vaccines that were developed did not go through a trial and efficacy procedure, and it was put without knowing if they were actually effective. In fact, across the United States, doctors and researchers believed they had found the answer to combat that pandemic.

spanish flu
Despite the fact that several vaccines were created to combat that pandemic, none were effective. Photo: Shutterstock

According to an article published in Burlington Free Press, a vaccine developed in Massachusetts would have been distributed throughout the state. This required 3 doses to be placed on 3 continuous days, and was said to have side effects.

However, there was no consensus on the effectiveness of these vaccines, and despite the efforts, those that were created were not effective since the scientists thought it was a bacterium, and not from a virus.

Flu shots

So it can be said that during the 1918 flu pandemic there was no vaccine, or at least one that was effective. It was not until the late 1930s that influenza was identified as being of viral rather than bacterial origin.

It was from 1940 when they began to develop flu vaccines. In this way it has been possible to contain the problems caused by influenza. However, keep in mind that viral processes appear that can escape control.

This is the case of the new coronavirus pandemic. Although there may be similarities between one pandemic and another, with a difference of about a hundred years, today it is already possible to have a Covid-19 vaccine.

It is true that the end of the current pandemic has not been reached, however, maintaining the prevention measures and having an effective vaccine it gives hope that the situation will improve little by little.

Current vaccines are 95% effective, as is the case with Pfizer. Producing these vaccines has been quite an achievement considering that to develop them it takes about 10 years.

A key factor is the technological advancement and accumulated knowledge about diseases.

At the beginning of the current pandemic, very little was known about the current Coronavirus, but the knowledge acquired has shown that it is necessary to maintain social distancing, the use of masks and hand washing, and when the time is right, receive the corresponding vaccine dose.

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