Thursday, September 29, 2005

September 29 Flu Update

Nightline is kicking off an avian flu story as I write...

Effect Measure has a report on the number of cases in Indonesia (63), and a full accounting of the definitions of cases (confirmed, suspected, etc) and how discrepancies can emerge.

Here's a Forbes report confirmed the 63 number.

ProMed on the four new cases.

Along the same lines, VOA has this report where a WHO spokesman says flu cases in Indonesia may actually be overstated.

Recombinomics takes on the testing reliability issue.

Here's the WHO source report VOA was using.

WHO appoints Brit David Nabarro to lead world flu efforts.

CIDRAP on Nabarro appointment.

Nabarro says the potential exists for 150M deaths from bird flu.

He said this, too:

"We expect the next influenza pandemic to come at any time now, and it's likely to be caused by a mutant of the virus that is currently causing bird flu in Asia," he said.


Where have we seen this before? Indonesia embarks on eradication effort.

People in Asia are still eating chicken....

Vietnam says it is going to build two bird flu labs, constructed to International standards.

In Thunder Bay, Ontario, they are gearing up for the bird flu at local agencies.

The Pan American Health Organization released its pandemic response plan...don't expect too much.

Eureka, CA asks if its ready for the bird flu.

FoxNews has the news on scientists in a "desperate" race on the bird flu.

Very interesting article in MacLeans, saying that the real enemy is "fear." Without endorsing its claims, it is a thoughtful piece, especially where it talks about how secure societies actually seek out theoretical things to be afraid of.

Oh, and he had some comments on flu blogs.


Helping to accelerate bird flu mania is a growing band of flu bloggers -- techno-agitators and armchair epidemiologists who see each new flu report or update as a call to arms, and use their blogs as a medium to inform and scare the daylights out of each other. "I got on the pandemic flu beat in 1997 when H5N1 was first identified," says Virginia-based Melanie Mattson, a 51-year-old writer and the proprietor of the flu blog Just a Bump on the Beltway. Mattson feels the mainstream media isn't doing enough to warn the masses. She and others say we can't trust our public institutions to save us. (Just look at what happened in New Orleans!) "What we're trying to do," Mattson declares, "is save lives."

The amount of effort that goes into flu blogging is astronomical: one of Mattson's regular posters is a woman named CanadaSue, a nurse from Kingston, Ont., who has constructed a 23-part scenario that details what her city of 112,000 would look like during a pandemic. "Flu bloggers have developed a kind of online community," says Crawford Kilian, a 64-year-old communications teacher from Vancouver who started out blogging about SARS, but has since switched his focus to H5N1. "But now, after watching what's happened in New Orleans, I began biting my lip about 'what if' and 'what's more,' " he says. "What if we get something like a hurricane and we get avian flu? How do we cope with it then?"

Note that Crawford Killian is Crofsblogs. And there are no arms in the chair I use!

In Australia, they are pushing for over-the-counter tamiflu sales.

Recombinomics says there's a cluster outside Jakarta, which could indicate more evidence that Stage 5 is here.

Effect Measure has some very interesting news from a few scientific journals. What they say is that statins (cholesterol medicine) could help to prevent the cytokine storm that is believed to be a major factor in the bird flu virulence.

Majority Leader Bill Frist wrote this on bird flu in Washington Times--its not his first. The Senate passed avian flu spending bill tonight (for tamiflu), and this is not the first Frist has written on it. (Crofsblogs)

Helen Branswell of CP on the US vaccine article from yesterday.

6 Comments:

At 3:57 AM, Blogger ukepm said...

Found this related article in the UK's Daily Mail

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/health/thehealthnews.html?in_article_id=363896&in_page_id=1797

Keep up the good work!

 
At 1:24 PM, Anonymous stephanie said...

Are you OK, Orange?

 
At 4:32 PM, Blogger Orange said...

Thanks for asking. Yes, everything is fine. I had updated the site this AM, but for some reason it didn't take, but now it is up. There was no update Saturday on account of a Cub Scout camping trip.

 
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At 5:28 AM, Blogger Horse Sense said...

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