Royal Alexandra Hospital, a breath of fresh air, c. 1900

Young patient having a chat with two older gents through the open windows of Royal Alexandra Hospital, c. 1900.

A young patient at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, now part of Royal Sussex County Hospital, having a light-hearted conversation with two gentlemen through the open windows, allowing him exposure to fresh air and sunshine. This was regarded as key parts of prevention and treatment of airborne infections such as influenza and tuberculosis. They also reduced the spread of smallpox, but at this time (c. 1900) Copeman vaccination against smallpox was more or less compulsory.

With Covid-19, the effectiveness of ventilation to reduce risk of infection from airborne pathogens has yet again been shown.