Monday, March 19, 2007

March 18 Flu Update

The ASEAN oseltamivir stockpile will be in Singapore which makes good sense.

An Australian publication says that the region needs 1 million more bird flu masks, and that the additional masks could help to stretch drug supplies.

Nigeria is organizing a mass rally to discuss the bird flu. Hopefully, they won't follow this same technique if a pandemic begins.

The world's bird flu doctors are meeting in Turkey to discuss their experiences treating emerging cases. As with much in the flu arena, it appears we are closing to knowing the questions than the answers.

"If we can make a list -- What are the questions of highest priority and what needs to be done to answers those questions? -- I think that already will be a big gain for a meeting like this,'' says de Jong, a virologist at the Tropical Medicine Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, where some of the first H5N1 patients were treated.

Abu Dhabi has banned the importation of live birds--"even a feather."

In Micronesia, 40 people completed a pandemic flu training session.

A professor in Texas gives his ideas on how the state can be ready to fight the bird flu. Note emphasis on surge capacity--something I think is solvable and ignored.

The Philippines is tagetting illegal the wild bird trade.

The Mayor of Jakarta has set a deadline for door-to-door searches for illegal backyard poultry to be completed. The deadline is in two weeks.

You may have noted some comments on yesterday's post concerning problems with the legislature funding Tamiflu purchases in Florida. The same thing is happening in Georgia.


At 6:53 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


I guess you probably have heard from somebody by now, that Singapore is an independent country and not part of Indonesia – it was part of the Malaysian Federation, I believe. It doesn’t matter though, it’s the most logical place in that area to store the Tamiflu stockpile, since Singapore is kind of like the neutral “Switzerland” of Asia.

Your Australian article on the estimated shortfall of the number of protective masks, got me wondering if anybody in the US or Canada has stopped to figure out how many we may be short. I doubt it. Simple obvious stuff like this is the most often over looked, or the assumption is that the state or local governments will figure it out.

I see Nigeria is at least organizing a mass rally to bring H5N1 awareness into their public eye. The governor of Indonesia is still issuing his incessant (about the second or third) “two week” notices for Jakarta residences to get rid of their backyard poultry. I’m afraid both of these activities in are pretty futile when it comes down to it. Eradication and control of H5N1 takes decisive action and commitment by all branches of the government, otherwise the efforts are in vain.

I noticed a couple of oddities in the article about the world’s doctors meeting in Turkey to discuss H5N1 patient treatment protocols and a new “patient data collection system”. First, there was no listing of what countries were being represented at the meeting. Second, the meeting will supposedly be behind closed doors, in order to “encourage doctors who may be working on scientific articles, to share their findings before publication”. Yeah, right, like a lot of people, I get very suspicious about “closed door meetings”. Especially worth noting is that their patient data collection system is totally voluntary and unenforceable – if a country like China or Indonesia doesn’t want to play ball, then they don’t have to. Also, notice that there are so few autopsies being done, or organ samples taken, due to “cultural or religious” reasons, one has to wonder whether or not they are entirely missing some of the most critical key issues and discussion points. Oh, well…

I have made a note in my planner not to travel to Florida or Georgia during a pandemic outbreak – looks like their legislator’s are out to thoroughly screw their citizens, by only having miniscule amounts of Tamiflu on hand. If I lived in either of those two states, I would be writing to my state legislature and starting a petition drive, no boudt-a-dout-it.

Fla_Medic may end up being one of the only few lone survivors in that state, still writing his pandemic memoirs, when all is said and done. At least the Lone Star state appears to be moving in the right direction.

And finally Orange, I wouldn’t advise smuggling poultry or even a feather into Abu Dhabi.

You know what they do to thieves and people in those countries that break the law ?

They chop their hands off.

(Very little adultery going on over there either, I might add).



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