Webinar video available

Last week, MSCA fellow Jessica Dimka presented her project on disability as a risk factor during the 1918 pandemic. Watch the video here:

https://hioa365-my.sharepoint.com/:v:/g/personal/jara_oslomet_no/ESZHmya9nFpMkfelP-PGWpgBBDsKDgPGhuAuBbFmgVbhZQ?e=xiwyq6

Jessica noted several sources that helped determine disease values used in her simulation model (and similar models for Newfoundland communities – see work by her PhD supervisor, Lisa Sattenspiel, and their colleagues). These sources include:

“‘An Avalanche of Unexpected Sickness’: Institutions and Disease in 1918 and Today.” Chelsea Chamberlain. June 23, 2020. Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. https://www.shgape.org/an-avalanche-of-unexpected-sickness/

Ferguson, N. M., Fraser, C., Donnelly, C. A., Ghani, A. C., & Anderson, R. M. (2004). Public health risk from the avian H5N1 influenza epidemic. Science, 304(5673), 968–969. https:// doi.org/10.1126/science.1096898

Mills, C. E., Robins, J. M., & Lipsitch, M. (2004). Transmissibility of 1918 pandemic influenza. Nature, 432, 904–906. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature03063

“How does epidemics end?”

The 10th and last webinar this spring is held by associate professor at University of Oxford, Erica Charters on June 10 at 1600-1700 (CET).

Please send e-mail to masv@oslomet.no to get the zoom-link

See Charters personal page here: Dr Erica Charters | Faculty of History (ox.ac.uk)

echarters

Blurb: As COVID-19 drags on and vaccines seem to promise widespread immunity, the world’s attention has turned to predicting how the present pandemic will end. Yet how do societies know when an epidemic has ended and normal life can resume? What criteria and markers indicate an epidemic’s end? Who has the insight, authority, and credibility to decipher these signs? Although researchers have paid a great deal of attention to the origins of epidemics and to the climactic high points of outbreaks, they have paid little attention to how epidemics actually end. This talk will redirect attention to the ending of epidemics, making use of historical and other disciplinary research to provide a tentative framework for outlining how epidemics end, as part of the interdisciplinary project ‘How Epidemics End’, based at the University of Oxford. 

Please join us for the May 20 (1600-1730 CET) webinar with Jessica Dimka

COVID-19 has shown that people with disabilities are at increased risk of severe illness and death during pandemics. Interacting biological and social factors likely contribute to these differences. For example, risks are especially high for those living in institutions.

Yet, few researchers have studied the experiences and outcomes of disabled people during past pandemics, including the 1918 influenza pandemic. As part of the webinar series of the Centre for Research on Pandemics & Society at Oslo Metropolitan University, Jessica Dimka, Ph.D., will present the main results of her Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowship in her talk, “Disability, Institutionalization, and the 1918 Flu Pandemic: From Historical Records to Simulation Models.”

Key points of the talk include:

  • A comparison of seven Norwegian psychiatric institutes shows that although a higher percentage of staff became ill, more of the residents who did get sick died.
  • Parish records from Sweden suggest that people with recorded disabilities had a higher chance of death than non-disabled people, but this was more apparent for those who were also institutionalized. People with mental health conditions and intellectual disabilities had a higher chance of death than the non-disabled, while other types of disability were not statistically significant.
  • Rich historical records were used to develop a simulation model of a school for children with disabilities to investigate the spread of epidemics within institutions. The model will be described, and preliminary analyses will be presented. For example, the model shows that the pattern and timing of spread are different for teachers and students.

The talk will conclude with a discussion of the relevance of this work for COVID-19 and future pandemics, including areas of future research, policy implications, and the disabling effects of pandemics.

For a Zoom link, please contact jessicad@oslomet.no or masv@oslomet.no

The talk will be in English, and International Sign interpretation is arranged. For general questions about the webinar including accessibility concerns, please contact jessicad@oslomet.no or ninha@oslomet.no

Image description: Image of the simulation model. Social spaces in the school are shown as rectangles of different colors. They include boarding rooms for staff and students, the dining room, a common room, vocational classrooms for training in work skills, and teaching classrooms, as well as an outdoor green space. At the start of a model run, staff (squares) and students (circles) are in their bedrooms. Two staff members have their own rooms, while all others share with 2 to 3 roommates. There are 10 to 12 students in each of the bedrooms. One student is in the upper right corner, because a small number of students often lived outside of the schools. During a model run, the individuals will jump to different social spaces throughout the day. Disease can spread as a result of being neighbors in the same social space with an infected person.
Image description: Image of the simulation model. Social spaces in the school are shown as rectangles of different colors. They include boarding rooms for staff and students, the dining room, a common room, vocational classrooms for training in work skills, and teaching classrooms, as well as an outdoor green space. At the start of a model run, staff (squares) and students (circles) are in their bedrooms. Two staff members have their own rooms, while all others share with 2 to 3 roommates. There are 10 to 12 students in each of the bedrooms. One student is in the upper right corner, because a small number of students often lived outside of the schools. During a model run, the individuals will jump to different social spaces throughout the day. Disease can spread as a result of being neighbors in the same social space with an infected person.

8th PANSOC-webinar, Gerardo Chowell-Puente: “Comparative analysis of excess mortality patterns during pandemics in Arizona and Mexico”

Gerardo Chowell

Prof. Chowell-Puente, is at Department of Population Health Sciences, Georgia State University School of Public Health, Atlanta, GA, USA.

Please send e-mail to masv@oslomet.no if you wish to participate in this webinar.

Blurb: Multiple factors such as low testing rates, test sensitivity, and misclassification of the cause of death hamper the derivation of reliable estimates of pandemic mortality burden. Estimating all-cause excess mortality above an expected mortality baseline can provide a reliable picture of the overall mortality burden during a severe pandemic event. In this talk, we focus on our work estimating mortality impact of the 1918 influenza pandemic and the COVID-19 pandemic. We will present a comparative analysis of excess mortality patterns by age, cause of death, and variation at the county level in the state of Arizona as well as its impact on natality and stillbirth risk. In light of these findings, we reflect on the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic Mexico, including a discussion of the public health implications of our findings.

PANSOC Fall Webinar Series, Thursdays 16:00-17:00 CET

We are pleased to announce the planned schedule for the Fall 2021 PANSOC Webinar Series. For Zoom links to the webinars, please email jessicad@oslomet.no

19 August: Elizabeth Wrigley-Field (University of Minnesota) & Martin Eiermann (University of Berkeley): “Racial Disparities in Mortality During the 1918 Influenza Pandemic in United States Cities.”

2 September – SPECIAL TIME: 17:00-18:00 CET – PANSOC’s MSCA Candidates: 

  • Alexandra Blinkova, Herzen State Pedagogical University (St. Petersburg): “Religious Views on COVID-19 as a Risk Factor in Prevention and Spread of Pandemic: A Case of Russia.”
  • Xanthi Tsoukli, University of Southern Denmark: “The Effects of the 1918 Influenza Pandemic on Crime and Poverty: Evidence from Norway.”
  • Ana Vuin, Charles Darwin University: “Regional Health Professional’s Experiences during the COVID-19 Crisis: Is There a Mismatch in Between the Theory and Practice?”

9 September: Ida Milne, Carlow College: “Forgetting and Remembering the Great Flu: Collecting and Shaping Narratives.”

16 September: Mathias Mølbak Ingholt, Roskilde University, Denmark: “Occupational Characteristics and Spatial Differences During an Intermittent Fever Epidemic in Early 19th Century Denmark.”

23 September: Mary Sheehan, University of Melbourne: “Women and the Spanish Influenza Pandemic in Melbourne, Australia, in 1919.”

30 September: Howard Phillips, University of Cape Town: “The Silence of the Survivors. South Africans and the Memory of the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918.”

7 October: Guido Alfani, Bocconi University: “Unravelling the Mysteries of Seventeenth-Century Plagues: The Contribution of Micro-Demographic Approaches.”

14 October: Lianne Tripp, University of Northern British Columbia: “The 1918/19 Influenza: Hidden Heterogeneity in an Island Population.”

21 October: Amir Afkhami, The George Washington University: “From Cholera to COVID19: Continuity and Change in Iran’s Pandemic Experience.”

28 October: Benedetta Scotti, Bocconi University and University of Bologna: “Putting COVID-19 into historical perspective: evidence from the mortality impact of the 1957-1958 and 1968-1970 flu pandemics in Italian provinces.”

11 November: Sharon DeWitte, University of South Carolina: “Social Inequality and Pandemic Mortality: The Biosocial Context of the 14th-Century Black Death.”

18 November: PANSOC’s Master’s Students:

  • Carla Louise Hughes: “The Association between the 1918 Influenza Pandemic and Suicide Rates in Norway.”
  • Lara Maria Dora Steinmetz: “How an Optimism Bias Influences the Degree of NPI Uptake during COVID-19 in Norway.”

2 December: Madeleine Mant, University of Toronto Mississauga: “Going Viral: COVID-19 and Risk in Young Adult Health Behaviour Models.”

9 December: Tamara Giles-Vernick, Institut Pasteur: “Complex local vulnerabilities and the COVID-19 pandemic in France.”

16 December: John Eicher, Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies and Pennsylvania State University – Altoona: “A Digital History Approach to Analyzing Memories of the 1918 Flu Pandemic.”

7th PANSOC webinar 29 April 16:00-17:00 (CET)

Taylor Paskoff, University of Missouri, USA, presents on “Determinants of post-1918 influenza pandemic tuberculosis mortality in Newfoundland”.

Send e-mail to masv@oslomet.no to get the zoom-link.

Blurb: In some places around the world, the severe impact of the 1918 influenza pandemic is considered to be the turning point for tuberculosis mortality, in that the former declined significantly after the pandemic due to possible selective effects. I investigate tuberculosis mortality trends on the island of Newfoundland for the first four decades of the 20th century (1900-1939) to identify where, or if, a significant decline in tuberculosis mortality occurred that could have been associated with the 1918 influenza pandemic. These mortality patterns are discussed in terms of the historical context of the island, including cultural and behavioral determinants that may have overshadowed any pathogenic selective effects.

6th PANSOC webinar 22 April 1600-1700 (CET)

Professor Lisa Sattenspiel, University of Missouri, USA, will present on “Comparing COVID and the 1918 flu in rural vs. urban counties of Missouri”.

If you wish to attend this Zoom-webinar, please send us an e-mail at: masv@oslomet.no

Blurb: Socioeconomic and demographic factors within communities strongly influence infectious disease patterns. I describe here how such factors affected the spread of the 1918 influenza and current COVID-19 pandemics in the state of Missouri, emphasizing the identification of attributes that may have differentially affected rural vs. urban populations. Results suggest that epidemic patterns were affected at both time periods by a combination of factors such as degree of rurality, distance from the major urban centers of Kansas City and St. Louis, availability of medical resources, and level of ethnic diversity.