April 2 Flu UpdateHelen Branswell weighs in with the story of the day. Did social distancing really work in the Spanish Flu? Not that it stopped the pandemic, but that it slowed it down and minimized the impact? It would appear based on this that it might have a "modest" effect.
The work supports the theory that early intervention with a series of social distancing measures should reduce the crush of cases when a pandemic virus first hits a community, allowing hospitals to cope better and buying time until a vaccine can be made and administered, said the research teams from the United States and Europe.
But both teams cautioned that these measures, called non-pharmaceutical interventions, can only really buy time. Evidence cited in both studies showed that when communities eased their restrictions in 1918, case counts quickly soared.
Washington Post on WHO FAO official, who says flu will be with us for the foreseeable future.
But Domenech said there had been fewer cases of bird flu so far this year than a year ago, indicating a reduction in overall viral load, and the presence of H5N1 in wild birds has been less than last year when the virus surged, particularly in Europe.
CIDRAP has this story as well. Note the FAO's "good news, bad news" viewpoint.
ProMed runs WHO's report on the recent cases in Egypt.
Reuters "Factbox" on human bird flu cases for the year.
CIDRAP on previously reported new cases in Egypt and Indonesia.
Kuwait is reporting no human bird flu cases, in spite of "rumors."
The turkey farm in Suffolk which had the bird flu outbreak will not be prosecuted.
Report on multi-nation flu exercise.
More flu in Myanmar.
We ran the story on the University of Rochester becoming a Center of Excellence for Influenza. Add the University of Minnesota...
as did UC Davis.
NPR's Marketplace does a story on how Indonesia "made sure" that vaccines would be available to poor countries.
Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam want to produce their own vaccines--also to be less dependent.
The USAID is spending $19M on commodities to help fight bird flu in poor nations.
A Canadian Occupational Health association has launched a website for pandemic planning.
Here is the website.