SOME HEALTH HEROES AND THEIR WORK

About two thousand years ago, people did not truly know the causes of diseases. Some thought the devil entered the pople to cause diseases. Others thought the air, the sun and the moon caused diseases. About 400
years ago, things began to change. Lens and microscope were invented. New knowledge showed the causes of diseases. Diseases are cause by tiny, microscopic organisms. These organisms are described as germs or bacteria.
Finally investigators found that different germs caused different diseases. Scientists have also found out how to kill these germs. Here are some of the scientists.
1. EDWARD JENNER:
He was born 1749. He died in 1823. He work in town called Berkeley in Gloucestershire in England. He worked as a doctor there. During his days, many people were killed by small-pox. He as a doctor was unhappy.
Edward Jenner looked at sicks people closely. He found out that some people suffered from cowpox. Cowpox was not dagerous. It did not kill people. Smallpox did. Edward Jenner knew from popular belief that people once suffered from cowpox before never suffered from smallpox again. Why was this so?
Edward Jenner set out to find the answer. He innoculated a young man with the cowpox germs. The man develop cowpox. After two months he innoculated the same youg man with smallpox germs. He was relieved to note that the young man did not develop smallpox. Thus Jenner was able to combat small pox. He also gave birth to the idea of vaccination and immunization.
2. JOSEPH LISTER:
He was a doctor who lived between 1827 and 1912. He was a specialist in surgery. He was terribly disturbed when most patients died. These patients died from septic wounds after each operation. He and his colleagues knew that this was due to dirt and germs.
He set out to prevent the wounds from operations becoming septic. He used a disinfectant called carbolic acid. When this disinfectant was apply to the wounds, they did not go septic. The carbolic acid killed all the germs.
Lister set out to clean the hospitals and operating theatres. All the instruments used in operation were cleaned with the disinfectant. The theatres were also sprayed with the disinfectant to kill the germs. Further methods of killing the germs were also developed. He saw that all instruments were boiled and the theatres thoroughly cleaned. He also made sure that surgeons wore gloves and mouth masks.
3. LOUIS PASTEUR:
He was born in France and live between 1822 and 1895. Pasteur was interested in the germs that causd things to decay. These germs were the same that cause diseases. The question were – How did these germ come about? Where the did they live?
Pasteur discover that the germs were found in dirty place. They also survived in man and animals which they made ill.
Pasteur equally dircover that the germs could not live where the air was clean and pure. They could not survive on the top of mountains. One other important discovery which he made was that germs could be made to grow in a weaker form. Such weak germs caused no diseases. They were thus used to make vaccines. People were innoculated with the vaccines. These vaccines protected them against disease attack. Pasteur was responsible for the vaccines that is being used to protect the body against rabies. Rabies is a dangerous disease which is passed around by infected dogs. It is very dangerous and kills unless instant treatment is given.
Pasteur’s work and discoveries were very well known. They were also useful. The French Goverment and people honoured him. An institution called Pasteur institute was built. Here Pasteur continued with his research. That institute built in 1888 still stands today.
4. FLOURENCE NIGHTINGALE
She was a nurse who lived between 1820 and 1910. During her time nurses were not respected. Hospital then were dirty and sick people who went there got worse because of the dirt and infection. Due to poor care, most sick persons who went to hospitals died.
War broke out between Russia, Great Britain and some countries in 1853. Many of the wounded soldiers died for lack of care. Flourence Nightingale hear the stories of the death of the soldiers. She was sad. Taking pity for the soldiers, she left Britain and went to the battle-field to take care of the wounded soldiers. She clean them and provided decent place for them. She also provide them with good food. She washed and clean their wounds. As a result of her work and devotion many soldier were saved.
Back in Britain after the war, Florence Nightingale continued with her good works. Realising that hospitals in Britain were still dirty, that people were still dying for dirt and infection and that nurses were also ignorant of what they should do, Florence Nightingale decided in 1860 to start a school for nurses. In the school, she taught them how to take care of sick people. This was the first schoof of nursing.
Today many nurses are following the foot step of florence Nightingale.

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