Thursday, March 24, 2005

March 24 Flu Update

Leading today's news is a second Cambodian dying of flu.

ProMed Mail has the news on the 195 cases. It appears to be largely a combination of psychological panic and ordinary flu, and not the massive outbreak originally reported.

The Recombnomics angle...

Effect Measure on the deeply confusing reports from Quang Binh.

Indonesia reports widespread bird flu, but no human cases--its only a matter of time.

New Hampshire figures about 1,000 deaths of bird flu sounds right...

If you have access, Science Magazine has a flu article. Best use of the word confounding...

Canada sending experts to SE Asia to see what can be done to help.

Looking ahead, the Canadians recognize that antivirals will be vital in early days of the pandemic. Yet, Doctors and nurses have litte experience with them. Article suggests a little practice now might help that.

Recombinomics on the emerging clusters and what they mean.

In today's sleeper story, scientists are saying cell cultures could speed up emergency flu preperation.


At 9:58 PM, Blogger GoodDeed said...

The story is: Dr. Niman of believes the pandemic has begun due to the now concentrated family cluster, all? 5 members admitted to hospital on the same day in Haiphong (read that as Haiphong, the harbor of Vietnam...the source of ships going everywhere, carrying garments and sailors).

The additional story found in the same online newspaper that assertively reported the news that the second nurse was NOT H5N1 positive. That story is from an unidentified official at the Ministry of Health in Vietnam.
[snip first part of article]

Human bird flu epidemic likely

Vietnam’s Health Ministry on Thursday admitted an avian flu epidemic in humans is likely as scattered outbreaks in almost all localities have not been dealt with thoroughly.

The country will launch a campaign to spring-clean poultry farms nationwide as of April 1 in a bid to curb the spread of the H5N1 bird flu virus, the ministry said in a dispatch to provinces and cities on Friday.

The ministry also asked local health departments to coordinate closely with animal health agencies to control outbreaks as well as seek and treat any infected case as early as possible.

Let's play Las Vegas odds. What's "likely" mean? 100% or 110%? To me, I understand the enmity the US has towards Vietnam, but the Chinese?? Well, I think that China again shows its true colors by abandoning Vietnam in its health crisis. China's offering them electricity now. Great. China also has a 1200 mile long by 6 mile wide corridor through which no fowl are to pass into China from Vietnam. China's true response to its satellite and neighbor is a modern day version of The Great Wall. Time passes and the Chinese act with as much arrogance and selfish paranoia as they did thousands of years ago. China's inaction here deserves appropriate world response: shun them and deny them the power they seek due to their massive population base. Instead of sending in thousands of qualified health care workers, which China obviously has, it instead announces a new law in Hong Kong that measures the temperature of everyone flying in from Vietnam (not a bad idea... hint hint United Airlines) as well as the right to block all future flights from Vietnam when human to human passage of flu becomes an official reality (also to me an appropriate response). China can still rush in and stamp down this virus. It holds large stocks of Tamiflu (I presume as Roche China I believe is a mfr of Tamiflu.) Instead, there's not been a single post I've seen in the past two months indicating China has taken one pro-active step to intervene on behalf of its neighbor and to protect its own population other than to close itself off and probably hope it will all go away.
China now depends on export to employ its people. By the fact that there is nothing reported other than blocking actions by China, I belive that their scandalous inaction will bring the economic walls crashing in on their people and result in the pandemic spreading much more quickly throughout the world.

I personally DEMAND that Chinese government takes proactive action NOW by sending hundreds, if not thousands, of its medical professionals and truckloads of its Tamiflu stock into Vietnam and Cambodia to block the avian flu epidemic now ripping through Vietnam, Cambodia, and probably all of Southeast Asia.

China has billions of US dollars in resources available to it to take this action. China has the political "right" to take this action. China has the moral responsibility to take this action.

I will wait and watch for China to show any sign other than that of a nation of self-serving, center of the world, frightened cowards.

Canada is sending a team of health experts to assess the situation. This would never have been necessary if China would have sent in its own team, ten times the size and fully aware of what is transpiring in Vietnam.

Shame is a word reserved for the deserving. China, where are you?

At 11:19 PM, Anonymous Bill+ said...

Solving the riddle of H5N1

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