The Health and Social Consequences of the 2001 Foot and Mouth Epidemic in North Cumbria
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Feedback conference [audio]

No [nursing] visit to a house during that period was simple. Emotions were near the surface and every day brought fresh news and concerns. I’m sure that if an audit of the medical and nursing registers were undertaken for that period, there would be little evidence of any increased formal counselling. This wasn’t because it didn’t happen but because it became the norm. But what happened to all that stress and tension? Where are we now? I think that’s the biggest unanswered question. Some people may have resolved their experiences but I feel for the majority, it was put on to the back burner and gradually buried in the day to day realities of living. This does not mean that it’s gone. For many people it’s like an unexploded bomb. At some point in their individual lives, some event will trigger its detonation. Stress can also be detrimental to physical health and it plays a large contributing part in many conditions. Yet the effect of the stress of that period will remain undocumented and unappreciated as it will be hard to allocate blame to one specific time frame.

(Respondent contribution to Voices of Experience conference 12 October 2003)



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