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Smallpox Eradication Research Papers

Smallpox eradication research papers look at medical efforts to get rid of the troublesome disease. Medical treatments for smallpox have virtually eradicated the disease but we still study it today to learn how to successfully research and get rid of a health problem.

Smallpox was an infectious disease that resulted in a rash and fluid filled blisters. Smallpox is believed to have emerged around 10,000 BCE and was responsible for as many as 400,000 annual deaths in Europe during the Eighteenth century. Smallpox had a mortality rate of between 20 and 60 percent, and upwards of 80 percent in children. The development of a smallpox vaccine led to its eradication by 1977.

Smallpox Eradication

Smallpox Eradication And Wortley

The first attempt to prevent smallpox was inoculation, in which either powdered smallpox scabs were inhaled or a small lesion was scratched on the skin. Lady Mary Wortley observed a smallpox inoculation in the Ottoman Empire, and brought the technique to England in 1718. In 1796, Edward Jenner discovered that smallpox immunity could be had through inoculation with material from a cowpox lesion. He called the material a vaccine, from the Latin word for cow, vacca.

Dr. John Clinch, a friend of Jenner, brought the vaccine to America in 1800. By 1842, the British Empire had banned inoculation in favor of mandatory vaccination. In the United States, the various states adopted mandatory vaccination, largely eradicating smallpox in the US by 1900.

In 1950, the Pan American Health Organization began a campaign to eradicate small pox in the Western hemisphere. This resulted in the following time line of success for smallpox eradication:

  • In 1958, the effort was taken globally.
  • By 1967, the WHO was spending over 2 million annually to eradicate smallpox.
  • The last naturally occurring case of smallpox was in 1975.

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