BILHARZIA: infestation or infection caused by the Schistosoma parasite
SMALLPOX: an infectious, often fatal disease caused by the pox virus
Caribbean Icons in STI Volume 1
Dr. Samuel Benjamin Jones was a medical doctor and magistrate, who improved Anguilla’s healthcare system in the early 1920s. His most significant contribution was the eradication of smallpox in that island, for which he received the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1933. He also performed extensive research on the cause and treatment of syphilis (a venereal disease) and Bilharziasis (now called Schistosomiasis) in St. Kitts.
Samuel Benjamin Jones was born in 1874 in Antigua. At age nine, he attended Antigua Grammar School on scholarship and later Codrington College. He taught in the United States of America then studied medicine. He held Licentiates of the Royal College of Physicians, University of Glasgow, and the Royal College of Surgeons, University of Edinburgh, Scotland. He returned to St. Kitts in 1918 as an Acting Medical Officer and became interested in intestinal worm infections.
He was transferred to Anguilla for five years and was instrumental in eradicating mild smallpox and Bilharziasis. He stayed on until retirement in 1939, working to create a proper healthcare system. He emphasized cleanliness in delivery rooms to reduce child mortality rates, established a small hospital, and trained a district nurse to teach basic sanitation. Dr. Jones also game free medical treatment to many persons. He advocated the Grow More Food Campaign introduced in St. Kitts and Nevis during the war and his advice was sought on a wide range of matters. For his contributions, he received an award from the people of Anguilla and St. Kitts and Nevis. He died on November 11th 1949.