The article is devoted to a comparative analysis of the composition and dynamics of the development of the anti-epidemic response of state, scientific, medical and public institutions of the leading countries of Western Europe, the Russian and Ottoman empires during the five cholera pandemic waves in the 19th – early 20th centuries. The difference in the unique features of social, cultural, political life and, at the same time, a general orientation towards one vector of development (western trend) make the analysis possible and relevant. The actuality layed not only in the general scientific sense, but also applicable to the current anti-epidemic practice of the emerging covid-19 pandemic. The comparative study is based on a comprehensive analysis of Russian, American, English and Turkish historiography. The work proves that the development of an anti-epidemic strategy is always the product of the already established tendencies of perception and response to emergencies and extraordinary situations in society, formats or patterns of “responses” to a global “challenge”, which in the course of events are only subject to certain adjustments, additions, updates. Confidence in the chosen strategy or the search for a strategy, the harmony of the chosen path or its search for social trends, plays a huge role. So, the general situation in Western European countries with a set of social characteristics inherent in them by the beginning of the 19th century (secularism, the leading role science and its self-developing potential, the development of public life and civil society institutions) only reinforced the chosen direction of the search for anti-epidemic policy algorithms, despite the delayed result, led to positive shifts both in the fight against cholera and the development of medicine in society as a whole (health care system, social hygiene, sanitation, preventive vaccination, etc.). Irregularities in the development of these social signs, with a general orientation towards a search path similar to Western Europe, the inconsistency of the relationship between power, medicine and society in the Russian Empire, did not lead, despite noticeable successes in certain clusters, to the organization of a common national health system till the beginning of the XX century subject to the vast territorial extent of the country, the key to effective implementation of choleratic measures. The transition to the European principles of anti-epidemic response in the harsh conditions of constant foreign policy pressure, the almost complete absence of a social foundation for the accumulation of innovations, or its deliberately secondary nature for social dispositions, the unpreparedness of the social system to massively rigid introduction of new principles, institutions, methods, practices and rules in society, as happened with the Ottoman Empire in the 19th century, did not contribute, despite the creation of almost all links and the maintenance of their performance, the addition of a national health system capable of developing an effective anti-epidemic response system in the conditions of the Ottoman society.
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