Edward Jenner's Widespread Smallpox Vaccines

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Although variolation had some success, the development of the first vaccine helped prevent smallpox with fewer side effects. Edward Jenner, as mentioned above, was a country physician and practicing surgeon. He studied various disease processes and performed postmortem examinations. In 1770, Jenner first made the connection between cowpox and small pox while being an apprentice for another country doctor. A dairymaid came into the office and was being treated for a pustular skin infection, but insisted that it was not smallpox because she had already had cowpox. Regional farmers knew that cowpox immunized a person from smallpox, but it was not a well-known fact. In the following years, Britain was hit by multiple smallpox epidemics, which …show more content…

He was confronted with political cartoons that showed babies with cow-horns growing out of their sites. There was also a group of London physicians that attempted to disprove Jenner’s ideas, but ended up confirming his claims by inoculating thousands of people with their own cow-deprived vaccines. Widespread smallpox vaccination began in the early 1800s and was met with public criticism from sanitary, religious, and political objections. Similar to parent’s objections today, the vaccines induced a sense of fear because it was so unfamiliar to the world. After seeing the results of the successful vaccinations, England passed two acts that required the smallpox vaccine. Many people believed that it violated their personal liberty because the government was forcing everyone to be injected with a drug against their permission. In response, two groups formed called the Anti-Vaccination League and the Anti-Compulsory Vaccination League. They planned demonstrations that lead to the development of a commission to study vaccinations. This commission ruled that the vaccine did protect against smallpox, but parents should not be penalized for choosing not to vaccinate their children. Similar attitudes arose when the United States started requiring all citizens to receive certain vaccines. Since 1971, those laws have …show more content…

Although the mortality rate had decreased, the disease was still not under control. By the 1950s, however, a number of control measures were taken and smallpox was eradicated from North America and Europe. Then began the process of worldwide eradication after the World Health Assembly received a report that over 60 countries were struggling to control smallpox outbreaks. By 1967, the World Health Organization started a global campaign to finally end smallpox and eventually eradicated the disease by 1977. Today this group is attempting to provide health care to the world and keeps people updated on outbreaks that are happening. Their attempt to keep people healthy is one reason why diseases could be eradicated, if they were provided more places. On May 8, 1980, the World Health Assembly announced that the world was free of smallpox and recommended that all countries cease vaccination: “The world and all its people have won freedom from smallpox, which was the most devastating disease sweeping in epidemic form through many countries since earliest times, leaving death, blindness and disfigurement in its wake.” The advances to the smallpox vaccination since Edward Jenner first performed a vaccination on James Phipps have proved Jenner to be more correct than wrong. The discovery and study of viruses and the understanding of

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