10 Pandemic flus and vaccination policies in Sweden
Lundgren and Martin
During the summer of 2010, unexpected
reports of narcolepsy in Swedish children and adolescents after vaccination
with the pandemic influenza vaccine Pandemrix came to the attention of the
Medical Products Agency (MPA). The main features of this condition are
The influenza pandemic of 1918 is no
subject for a triumphalist medical history. No effective treatment was
available at the time, and the influenza viruses still defy medical
science. 1 Hence
those historians of empire who have published work on the pandemic have
not discussed diagnosis or cure but focused rather on its demographic
consequences, 2 or
A Belated but Welcome Theory of Change on Mental Health and
disability and vice versa. 7
Neglect of underlying social and economic determinants reduces all healthcare
service impact. The interconnection has become painfully apparent during the current
COVID-19 pandemic, with the novel coronavirus compounding and complicating the
disease burden among the poor. For example, UK research revealed that people with
hypertension, diabetes and obesity are at higher risk of poor virus outcomes ( The Health Foundation, 2020 ; Public Health England, 2020
Recounting the failures of the United States to adequately address the COVID-19
pandemic, reflecting on the parade of mendacity that has encapsulated the 45th
presidency, and interpreting Baldwin’s call to be responsible to our
children, Justin A. Joyce introduces the sixth volume of James Baldwin
and humanitarianism ( Medie and Kang, 2018 ).
It would be remiss of me not to mention the context in which this issue was put together.
Many have highlighted the gendered impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic ( Azcona et al. , 2020 ; Parry and Gordon, 2020 ; Wenham, Smith and Morgan, 2020 ; Wenham et al. , 2020 ), and the pandemic has
also impacted this issue. Contributions which would have further enhanced this issue
were delayed by the pressures of responding to the pandemic, whether in a professional
Ireland offers a particularly interesting canvas to study the social and political effects of the 1918–19 influenza pandemic, which is the largest the world has ever known. The influenza inserted itself into every running theme in Irish society, from the over-burdened and disjointed medical system, to the growing discontent with British rule, and the difficulties imposed by World War I. The influenza pandemic was contemporaneous with the so-called German plot, where anti-conscription campaigners had been interned on a trumped up charge by the government. Two of the internees would die from the disease, even as nationalists warned of the dangers of being imprisoned at this time. This work also draws on oral histories with survivors who spoke of this disease they suffered as children at the end of their lives. It tells how doctors had their new confidence in bacteriology challenged as it failed to provide answers to cure patients. It tells too of the families who suffered loss, and often changing financial circumstances when parents died. Life, for some, was never the same, whether through continued ill health or loss of loved ones.
The case of the management of the dead related to COVID-19
This article studies one of the humanitarian challenges caused by the COVID-19 crisis: the dignified handling of the mortal remains of individuals that have died from COVID-19 in Muslim contexts. It illustrates the discussion with examples from Sunni Muslim-majority states when relevant, such as Egypt, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Morocco and Pakistan, and examples from English-speaking non-Muslim majority states such as the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada and Australia as well as Sri Lanka. The article finds that the case of the management of dead bodies of people who have died from COVID-19 has shown that the creativity and flexibility enshrined in the Islamic law-making logic and methodology, on the one hand, and the cooperation between Muslim jurists and specialised medical and forensic experts, on the other, have contributed to saving people’s lives and mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in Muslim contexts.
After three special issues of the Journal of Humanitarian Affairs – on humanitarianism and the end of liberal order, humanitarian security and humanitarian innovation – the first regular issue includes a range of articles touching on questions that at the time of writing are largely off the radar of global public attention. When the journal’s editorial board compiled the contributions to this issue, it could not have foreseen the first pandemic of the twenty-first century: Covid-19.
The same eyes that now frantically pore over graphs showing the evolution
aspiration of vaccination is remote. Some may be
lucky and get some of the crumbs from the COVAX Facility, aimed at providing access to
COVID-19 vaccines to all those in need, but vaccine nationalism has become the norm.
What would really be needed, that is, to abolish patent rights and allow generic
production of all effective vaccines ( Acharya and
Reddy, 2020 ), is unlikely to happen. If the COVID-19 pandemic is not the time
to treat vaccine formula as a public good, it never will come
Frédéric Le Marcis, Luisa Enria, Sharon Abramowitz, Almudena-Mari Saez, and Sylvain Landry B. Faye
( 2016 ), ‘ Biosocial
Approaches to the 2013–2016 Ebola Pandemic ’,
Health and Human Rights Journal ,
18 : 1 ,
115 – 28 , PMID:
Saez , A.
( 2014 ) ‘ Burial in Times of Ebola - Dos
and Don’ts – issues of acceptability