St Kilda islanders hardships: three-fourths of people down with illness
1 May 1920
A graphic account of the hardships and distress of the St Kilda islanders was told by Captain Craig, of the trawler Active, which is acting as mail boat between Aberdeen and St Kilda, on its arrival at Aberdeen today.
Captain Craig said out of the sparse population of some 80 islanders 60 were prostrated with illness, in most cases influenza. All work in the island, the tending of sheep flocks, the spinning of wool, and fishing, is at a complete standstill. There is a lamentable dearth of medical skill and medicines for those stricken with illness. With commendable zeal Nurse Mackenzie, a Glasgow lady, has taken up residence at the island, and the skipper reports that, although she is almost worked off her feet is ministering to those in need of help, she is unable, owing to the lack of medical supplies, to cope adequately with the epidemic now raging.
Influenza and inoculation: test on Manchester medical students
26 March 1920
Some two hundred medical students, from Manchester University have, at the instance of Professor HR Dean, recently been inoculated against influenza with a vaccine provided by the Government.
The after effects of the injection, it would appear, are not so unpleasant as in the case of inoculation for typhoid, only one student of the 200 having complained of any illness. The efficacy the vaccine, however, has still to be determined,
Immediately after the great influenza scourge last year it was produced by the government in anticipation of the return of the infection this winter, and has not yet been satisfactorily tested. Even from the present test no great results are expected, as no epidemic of influenza is at present anticipated.
Prince’s tour postponed: influenza on board the Renown
8 March 1920
It is officially announced that the departure of the Prince of Wales for Australia, which was to have taken place to-morrow, is unavoidably delayed by an outbreak of influenza on board the Renown. The ship has been placed in quarantine, and it is hoped that no fresh cases will occur.
The Prince intends to sail at the earliest possible moment. It has been necessary to postpone by one week all his engagements throughout the tour, but no farther postponement will he made unless it is absolutely necessitated by a continuance of the epidemic. The actual date for sailing will be notified as soon as the ship is declared free of quarantine.
The presence of influenza on board the battle cruiser was first detected on Saturday when the vessel was put under observation. There are other cases reported in the port. It is not expected the postponed departure will be a very long one, as the cases on board the vessel have only numbered 33 since the beginning of February, and have been of a very mild type. Patients are removed to hospital directly they fall ill, and there have not been more than six cases in any one day. No fresh case was reported yesterday.
The new influenza
The Observer, 7 March 1920
The epidemic of influenza [in Vienna] continues; in connection with it there have been serious cases of inflammation of the brain. The number of school children is diminishing terribly, and only five per cent of them are properly fed. Of the two women’s lying-in hospitals it is intended to close one, as there is not a sufficient number of births. Most excellent work is done by the Society of Friends (English and American) who provide pregnant women and children under six with condensed milk and other important articles, and whose humane activity deserves the highest praise. Their kindness has helped thousands of women and little ones.
Life in Vienna: 40,000 cases of influenza
The Observer, 29 February 1920
There are 40,000 cases on influenza in Vienna at present, most of the patients have have to live in icy rooms, and they are mainly without milk, proper food, and medicines. On the other hand, large quantities of milk are consumed by the rich with chocolate, etc; they get it from the milk-sellers who receive it for infants and patients, but often mix 70 per cent of water and more to their tiny rations, if they sell them any at all. It is a scandal at which the authorities simply look on.
More influenza: epidemic in localised communities
27 February 1920
The Ministry of Health, in a memorandum on influenza, states that as regards England and Wales influenza is epidemic in a few localised communities, and that the type is similar to but less severe that that of 1918-19.
There is no evidence of the existence of pandemic influence in these islands at the present time comparable with that which is occurring in American cities and in certain parts of Europe. In view, however, of the increase of the number of notified cases of pneumonia and and the existence of the epidemic influenza occurring in certain schools, the Ministry again direct attention to their general warning and re-emphasises the importance of attention to the measures therein advised.
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