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Puzzle in the form of a maze showing the path from 'Slumdon' to 'Good Health', England, 1930-1939

By purchasing this puzzle you could have fun, learn how to avoid ill health and raise money for a worthy cause – the Infant’s Hospital in Vincent Square, London. The hospital was set up in 1903. Prior to the establishment of the National Health Service in 1948, all hospitals relied heavily on charitable donations. The subject of this game acknowledges the link between poor housing and poor health – a major element of public health policies in the inter-war period (1918-1939). Each of the holes represents a barrier to ‘good health’ and gives us an idea of what these were at the time. They include pneumonia, lack of sunlight (which causes rickets), crowded housing, bad diet and meningitis. The Infant’s Hospital, now part of the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, trained doctors and nurses specifically in child care and researched the causes of infants’ deaths.

Object number:

1985-1192

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Glossary:

Glossary: rickets

A condition caused by a lack of vitamin D. Characterized by soft and deformed bones, which can lead to an increased number of injuries.

Glossary: pneumonia

Inflammation of the lungs caused by bacteria. The air sacs (alveoli) become filled with inflammatory cells and the lungs eventually become solid.

Glossary: charity

The noble act of voluntarily giving goods, money or time to those in need.

Glossary: meningitis

A severe medical condition that can come in both viral and bacterial form. Meningitis causes inflammation of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. Symptoms include headache, fever, nausea, stiffness of the neck and an aversion to light.

Glossary: puzzle

Use for recreational artifacts designed as amusements or diversions by presenting constructional difficulties to be solved by ingenuity or patient effort