The Iron Lung (ventilator of the 1940s)
Epidemics are a big deal to me, so I take this one very seriously. As a small child in the 1940s, I had bulbar polio causing paralysis of my breathing muscles and almost died in the hospital. In the Isolation Ward, I watched the kids in the booths on both sides die. I survived the Isolation Ward and was moved to a private room. An Iron Lung sat unused in the corner; this was the “ventilator” of the 1940s; the modern versions are now in short supply for COVID-19. I survived only because my mother was a Registered Nurse and stayed 24/7 in my room working my throat muscles for weeks (really!). My paralysis “went away” with therapy, but a couple of years ago a neurologist found that I have symptoms of post-polio syndrome. In 1955, Dr. Jonas Saulk introduced the vaccine and that disease is now virtually extinct.
We are being deluged with news about this rapidly spreading COVID-19, which usually kills by pneumonia in all age groups. Below, I offer references for your convenience. I urge you to take this situation seriously, because the earlier you settle on your personal plan, the better your chances. For Millennials and Gen Z, the odds are far better than earlier generations. But if you ignore precautions outlined in the report at the end of the post, you become a primary carrier of the disease and will be responsible for increasing the death toll in your environment: home, family, friends, social circle, church, mosque, synagogue, university, workplace—where you mingle.
What amazes me is how many otherwise intelligent folks are unaware of the looming calamity. This is a moral dilemma, which is directly related to personal choice. Are we going to throw grandparents under the bus? A year from now, we’ll look back and reconsider our decisions, if we’re still around, whether in good health or with scarred lungs. But, then it will be too late to change anything. It’s now or never.
The most recent, well-documented and comparable epidemic is the 1918 Pandemic (H1N1 virus) This will prepare you for what’s coming if we don’t get our act together. Yes, it is our responsibility. Yes, we know what we must do to avoid repetition. The operative word is “we.”
Presently, the USA and Great Britain crisis response teams are assimilating the data and reformulating their plans to mitigate the damage to their citizens based upon the following 2-days-old, 20-page analytic report. Don’t overlook the control bar at the bottom of the visible page.
Thanks for visiting,
R. E. J. Burke