British Leaders: John Snow, Edwin Chadwick And William Henry Beveridge

951 words - 4 pages

John Snow
John Snow born on the 15th March 1813 – 16th June 1858 grew up in the poorest region of York and subsequently specialised his life establishing the link between the cholera infection he had first encountered in 1831 in Newcastle and water as its vector. Snow’s most famous attribute was his research relating to the cholera outbreak in the London Epidemic of 1854. ‘On proceeding to the spot, I found that nearly all the deaths had taken place within a short distance of the [Broad Street] pump. There were only ten deaths in houses situated decidedly nearer to another street-pump. In five of these cases the families of the deceased persons informed me that they always sent to the pump ...view middle of the document...

This study has since become the founding event of the science of epidemiology and Snow has since had many memorials and honours in his name.

Edwin Chadwick
(The Sanitary Movement, Poor Law Act, First public Health Act)
Edwin Chadwick born on the 24th January 1800 – 6th July 1890 grew up in Manchester, Later moving to London to pursue his interest in political and social reform. Chadwick believed that using scientific reasoning and justification as a means for social improvement would work and in 1832 he was asked to investigate the effectiveness of the Poor Laws – A system of social welfare put in place by Elizabeth I in 1601. Chadwick along with a commission of nine passed the new Poor law Amendment Act of 1834 governed by two overarching principles; less eligibility and the workhouse test. Whilst carrying out his investigations into the living conditions in which the poor live Chadwick became concerned about sanitation conditions. Edwin Chadwick believed in the ancient miasma theory dating back to before 1AD, The theory stated that disease was caused by miasma (Ancient Greek ‘Pollution’) because of his beliefs he was convinced that measures such as cleaning, drainage and proper ventilation would help people’s health and put less strain on welfare. In 1842 Chadwick publicised his findings of the influenza and typhoid epidemics in The Sanitary Conditions of the Labouring Population. In his publication Chadwick used methods to show the direct link between disease, illness and life expectancy and the poor living conditions the individual was exposed to. Sponsored by the Poor Law Commission the Movement sold over 30,000 copies but as it was published in Chadwick's name it did not have the authority of an official document. Chadwick’s findings were later the motivation for the Public Health Act of 1848 and the establishment of the General Board of Health of which Chadwick...

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