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

Headline: “Flu Conditions Much Improved”

Source: Spokane Daily Chronicle December 27, 1918, p. 5

Subject: Influenza situation in Spokane improves

Synopsis: Despite the improving of the influenza epidemic in Spokane, city health officer Dr. J.B. Anderson does not lift the influenza ban in the city. He offers cautious optimism that the holiday shopping season won’t cause a recurrence of the epidemic. He also gives some facts about the epidemic.

Notable Quotations:

• “This report brings the total influenza cases up to 10,402 since the beginning of the epidemic. The total deaths to date are 408.”

• “‘If nothing new develops from the holiday shopping and festivities I believe we are ridding ourselves of the disease in fine shape,’ stated Dr. Anderson.”

“Flu Conditions Much Improved”

            No developments are seen by Dr. J.B. Anderson, city health officer, warranting the immediate lifting of the influenza ban, according to a statement made by him this morning.

            Up to 11 o’clock today five new cases of influenza and five cases of pneumonia had been reported to the health office. The pneumonia cases, however, were of a milder type than those reported lately. This report brings the total influenza cases up to 10,402 since the beginning of the epidemic. The total deaths to date are 408. No deaths were reported yesterday. The total pneumonia cases, including the five reported this morning, number 797. Two hundred and twenty-five cases have been reported so far this month.

            “If nothing new develops from the holiday shopping and festivities I believe we are ridding ourselves of the disease in fine shape,” stated Dr. Anderson. “What we want to do now is to keep it from coming back again. We have had our second siege of it and that is a plenty. The general public should realize this fact and move cautiously.”