March 4 – IEFS

The 1918 influenza pandemic, initially known as the “Soldier of Naples” and later as the “Spanish Flu” or “Trancaso Flu,” was caused by an outbreak of the influenza A virus. This pandemic, unlike other influenza epidemics that have affected children and the elderly, affects people of any age, even those in good health. It is considered one of the most devastating epidemics in human history, killing more than 40 million people from 1918 to 1920.

The disease was first reported in Kansas, USA, on March 4, 1918, but by the end of 1917 the first wave of epidemics had occurred. Although the virus was discovered in March, over the summer the virus underwent some type of mutation that transformed it into a deadly contagion. Within hours of the discovery of “Patient Zero”, dozens of cases had been recorded and a hangar had to be set up for patients because the hospital did not have enough capacity.

This became known as the “Spanish Flu” because the pandemic attracted more attention from the Spanish media and press because the country was not involved in World War I, so information about the disease was not censored.

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