As the COVID-19 pandemic leaves its imprint on our generation, many may experience a familiar feeling invoking stories of the past. In fact, as all things COVID have unfolded, researchers and history buffs alike have identified some amazing similarities between COVID-19 and the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918.
This recognition delivers a couple of important takeaways. One is that old adage – this too shall pass. The other lets us know that the best spread prevention tactic around this virus is knowledge. By this we mean knowing whether we’re in danger of spreading it to our loved ones, or anyone else we might encounter in our daily routines. With that in mind, how can we tell we are at risk to spread the virus? The answer is simple: testing. You may ask yourself, “where can I find the most convenient COVID-19 PCR tests near me?” Olympus Health & Performance has just the answer for our fellow Utahns.
We proudly offer coronavirus PCR testing in Salt Lake City. We’ve tested thousands of people and we’re here for you, your family, and our community, to keep you healthy and safe. With that, we also believe in our role to help remove the uncertainty and fear around this pandemic. That’s why we think it’s useful to remind Utah residents that this is not new ground we walk upon today.
Are We Really Living in New Territory? COVID-19 and Its Similarities to the Spanish Flu Pandemic
Over a century ago, the Spanish Flu swept the globe with devastating effects similar to those we’ve experienced with COVID. The Spanish Flu traveled quickly with cases spreading from U.S. troops in March of 1918 to European countries including England, France, Spain, and Italy; by that summer reaching Asia, Africa, Russia, and New Zealand. In terms of rapid transmission, COVID holds its ground with cases reported in Wuhan, China in December 2019 and spreading across the entire globe by March of 2020. In 1918 we couldn’t ask “where can I find the most convenient COVID-19 PCR tests near me?” but thankfully during this pandemic, Olympus Health & Performance is the answer.
Waves, We’ve Seen This Before
Like COVID, those tired of the Spanish Flu and its devastating effects on their personal and work lives, got their hopes up each time it seemed to wane. Unfortunately, the flu would flare up again in four waves, each differing in intensity compared to its previous bout. The dangers in the virus’ mutations echo the woes of today, with the Journal of Clinical Virology stating in 2009, “Two-thirds of all the deaths from Spanish influenza occurred during the months from October through December 1918,” after a summer of mutations. It’s estimated 500 million people succumbed to the Spanish Flu making for a world-wide fatality rate of 2.7 percent. We hope our fellow Utah residents will find some comfort in the realization that COVID-19’s worldwide fatality rate sits at approximately 0.05 percent, and 4 million fatalities to date. When our community asks “where can I find the most convenient COVID-19 PCR tests near me?” at Olympus Health & Performance, we understand why.
Masking Up, Also Not New
Over 100 years ago the Board of Health also ordered masks be worn in public spaces. Like today, the effectiveness of the mask was highly debated, even by medical professionals. While masks carried a price tag of approximately $0.10 each back then, in the 21st century they became a lucrative business as people aimed to personalize and utilize them as forms of self-expression.
More Intense Isolation
During the Spanish Flu, large group gatherings were prohibited, but isolation rules and legislation did not reach so deeply as those associated with COVID-19 today. For instance, should schools be closed, children still played in the streets with one another. One century later, it’s been deemed that 6 feet apart is the safe distance to be maintained outside of the household.
Closures: More Than Inconvenient
Pandemic-related closures interrupted daily life as much 100 years ago as they’ve affected us today. During the Spanish Flu, important institutions including schools and churches were restricted in access. However, retail businesses retaliated in response to reduced operating hours using the logic that the same number of shoppers would crowd in regardless. At least now we have online shopping and delivery!
The Uncertainty Remains
Despite its similarities to the Spanish Flu, COVID-19 and its variants has left us uncertain what life will look like in the future. At Olympus Health & Performance we believe there is a redeeming power in gathering whatever control and knowledge we can today. That’s why when people ask, “where can I find the most convenient COVID-19 PCR tests near me?” we’re proud to say we’ve tested thousands of people for COVID-19. With a simple nasal swab, we can inform our clients whether they have an active coronavirus infection or not, even if asymptomatic.