Spokane and the Nation: The Influenza Epidemic of 1918-1919

Headline: “‘Don’t Kick! Help!’ Says Health Man”

Source: Spokesman-Review, October 21, 1918, page 6

Subject: Rules for the emergency influenza hospital

Synopsis: Spokane’s lead health officer, Dr. J.B. Anderson, posted rules and regulations on how to treat patients at the Lion Hotel, site of the city’s emergency influenza hospital. Among the rules are: no visiting of patients is allowed, financially able patients must pay $10 up front, and the names of physicians are not to be put on the doors of their patients’ rooms.

Notable Quotations:

• “It is unreasonable for any one to expect just yet fully complete and perfect hospital technique.”

• “Don’t kick -- help.”

• “Nurses are instructed to carry no verbal order. Remember, doctor, your order to be executed must be written on the history chart.”

“‘Don’t Kick! Help!’ Says Health Man”

Must Not “Expect Perfect Technique,” Declares Dr. J.B. Anderson.

“Flu” Hospital Rules

Only Liquid and Soft Diet to Be Furnished by Institution.

            The following rules and regulations, compiled by Dr. J.B. Anderson, city health officer, have been posted in the city’s emergency influenza hospital in the Lion hotel:

            To all interested persons, please remember that now is the time for work, not criticism. The emergency “flu” hospital is of mushroom growth, developed from a hotel. It is unreasonable for any one to expect just yet fully complete and perfect hospital technique. We are giving you the best that we have and can now obtain – let us have your cooperation.

            Don’t kick – help.

            The hospital will furnish no medicine, prescriptions, serums, etc., for private patients.

            Only liquid and soft diet, such as custard, milk, toast, cereals, eggs, will be furnished by hospital.

            No special nurses will be furnished by hospital or allowed to serve therein.

            General visiting will be denied.

            Important – This rule will be insisted upon. Physicians must make arrangements with superintendent or hospital before ordering patients in.

            All patients who are financially able must pay $10 in advance.

            Special or general trays will not be served under any circumstances. Special articles of diet will have to be arranged for in advance by physicians in attendance.

            The name of physician will not be put on the door of the patient.

            A list of rooms, patient’s name and physician in attendance will be kept at the office for reference.

            Nurses are instructed to carry no verbal order. Remember, doctor, your order to be executed must be written on the history chart.

            Physicians will be required to look after details of special prescriptions for their patients.

            The management reserves the right to put additional patients in any room or ward.

            Physicians sending private patients to the hospital will be required to look after the details of treatment.