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Old 6th Sep 2018, 16:56
  #28 (permalink)  
msjh
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: UK
Posts: 78
OK, it's the 100th anniversary of the Flu pandemic of 1918. But consider:
  • we've learned a lot about flu (and other virus and non-virus diseases). Simple example: flu jabs that largely protect millions every year. Not perfect but pretty good.
  • our communications are astonishingly better. News of the outbreak of an illness can spread around the Earth in seconds, versus weeks in 1918. Indeed, news of an illness can travel dramatically faster than the disease itself, which certainly was not typically the case in 1918.
  • We're healthier than we were in 1918. Yes, the news highlights the obese but most people today are immensely healthier than they were a hundred years ago.
  • And that's largely because around the world there is far less poverty than a hundred years ago.
  • In the Western world at least there are good health systems. Compared with a hundred years ago, there are much better health systems in most places.
I am quite aware that it is possible to sketch out a scenario where a new and deadly bug ravages the world. But I remain an optimist: our health is better, our health systems are better and our ability to identify and stop new diseases is pretty good. And I unashamedly refer you to Hans Rosling's Book "Factfulness" for the reasons behind my optimism, as well as the associated website at gapminder.org .
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