Monday, September 17, 2007

September 17 Flu Update

Bird flu is confirmed in Southern China, near Hong Kong.

Hong Kong reacted swiftly.

CIDRAP on China/Hong Kong

Meanwhile, poultry markets are staying open, with assurances they won't spread bird flu.

Singapore has lifted a ban on Malaysian poultry.

Indonesian official says bird flu remains serious threat.

In the Philippines, the government plans to use gamefowl revenue for funding bird flu programs.

Sanofi says its vaccine is getting good immune response at a low dose.

Interesting article on children as germ spreaders.

A bird flu seminar is set for West Virginia.


At 6:09 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


I am afraid the H5N1 infected duck situation in Guangzhou, China, is worse than they are admitting (so what else is new). Word on the street is that they are culling over 100,000 duckies, and the number is climbing steadily, in order to contain the outbreak. Of course, the biggest issue being discussed everywhere is: has the virus actually mutated, or has the vaccine become mainly ineffective ? We won’t know the real story on either, unfortunately. Censorship is alive and well in China, and don’t anyone think otherwise.

Also, as the worlds largest producer of poultry – with 4.69 million food operators, 345,800 companies, and 2.54 million self-employed individuals in handling poultry – what are the chances of H5N1 getting out of control ? Pretty good in my view.
Interesting article in the Washington Post on the China situation:
The big issue with children as “germ spreaders”, is that it is true, and there is no national or state mandated coordinated policy or regulations for school closures when a pandemic emergency is declared by the President. Unfortunately, it’s one of those thorny issues involving federal or state’s rights and responsibilities. In actuality, the decision will rest ultimately on the shoulders of local School Boards and Superintendents, who mainly function as politico’s and little else. School Superintendents especially throughout the US, are extremely overpaid, pretty spineless, and dread making command decisions without the district lawyers behind them. The actual “policy influencer’s” and implementers are the teacher’s unions and the parents, who will end up taking matters into their own hands. When you think about it, it’s really sad what our education system has come down to in the US… the “no child left behind” slogan and federal meddling, almost ensures mediocrity and the lowest common denominator when it comes to educating our children. Kind of like what our public health care system has degenerated into: if you got the bucks, you can afford the best.

In my opinion, if parents are really SMART, they would start thinking now, what contingency plans they could implement, if they had to withhold their children from public school or a university for a protracted period of time, due to a pandemic or other national emergency, and not wait until the next crisis looms.

My children are grown, however, I still feel passionately about this issue enough to make a statement: our children, like our senior citizens are our most vulnerable members of society. Let’s get the children vaccinated and an iron-clad influenza pandemic protection plan put into place.

They are our future. Old people like me, well, I’ve had a good run at things and I’ll take my chances.



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