Tag: Public Health


History of the eradication of Smallpox

Smallpox has been one of the most fatal infectious diseases to have afflicted humankind in recorded history. From the earliest recorded occurrences of the disease we learn that the disease spread rapidly where ever human population was dense and killed one in five of infected persons. Children were particularly vulnerable, as it claimed one in three of them during an outbreak. Since the disease was spread by air, it was very difficult to contain it in congested human settlements such as cities. Not until the discovery of medical vaccination were humans able to protect themselves against smallpox. While vaccination option remained controversial throughout, there is no doubt that it greatly helped contain the disease and save thousands of lives. The improvement in sanitary conditions in cities and hygiene levels in hospitals had also contributed to controlling the disease. (Brickman, 2002)

As statistics from Britain’s National Health Service shows, the first stage in the . . . Read More

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Social determinants of health in the context of globalization and modernization

The phenomenon of globalization is as old as organized commerce. In its early days, the wealth generated by globalization was limited to a small elite community. But as modes of transport, communication and remote business organization advanced it has led to sustained living standard improvements in many industrial societies. This has happened to the extent that these days the word globalization has become synonymous with efficiency, economic opportunity and overall human security. While such developments are partially true there is also another side to the story. While the advanced nations of hemispheric West have had benign consequences as a result of globalization, key human development parameters of most Third World countries have fallen proportionately. Hence, it is difficult to present a blanket view of the impact of globalization on public health. In light of this fact, this essay will attempt to attain a nuanced understanding of globalization’s overall effect on public . . . Read More

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