Wednesday, November 28, 2007

November 28 Flu Update

Avian outbreak in Romania....

ProMed on Romania, including an OIE report.

More culling in Saudi Arabia.

CIDRAP has the update from Romania, Saudi Arabia, Myanmar, etc.

EU compensation policies could mean big losses to poultry farmers during an outbreak.

The Media may have lost interest in bird flu, but these IT managers have not.

Bob Kallas, director of computer support services at a company he didn't want named, says his firm conducted a test a few months ago to see how many workers it could support remotely. The company picked a day and then told several hundred employees to work from home. "We want to measure readiness to be able to support the company," he says.

Snohomish County has its pandemic plan.

A new disinfectant is available to fight the bird flu.

More on the physical barrier issue. Australia's government is promoting physical barriers.

Official US State Department release on the Geneva meeting. Goal was to improve surveillance network.

In Uganda, journalists go to school on covering the bird flu.

A regional bird flu center (centre?) will open in India soon.

1 Comments:

At 6:33 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...

Orange;

Bravo to the computer geeks and their continued focus on pandemic planning – the IT folks always seem to be at the forefront of technological issues which could blindside them. Maybe it’s because of their nature and disposition. They probably saw the reports lately out of Australia and New South Wales (NSW): the number of flu victims who died in NSW alone was near 800 in five weeks. Based on that information, England has suddenly seen the light, rev’d up and significantly increase their antiviral orders and public health pandemic communication campaign in the last week or so.

Regarding your article about Australia’s promotion of “physical barriers” to halt the spread of a potential deadly influenza, like H5N1 – it makes all the sense in the world. No amount of antiviral stockpile or pre-pandemic vaccine will be able to replace good old fashion common sense: wearing face masks, continually washing your hands, self-isolation and voluntary quarantines, avoiding public exposure at all costs, and using plenty of disinfectant on surfaces, should work like a charm. I agree with all of these measures. The only problem I see with this advice is that people will not use common sense during a pandemic, any more than they don’t use it during regular flu season epidemics.

How many times have we seen extremely sick people come to work spreading germs and viruses and infecting others, simply because they don’t care ? All the time. How many times in public have we seen obviously sick people coughing, wheezing and hacking ? All the time. Personally, I believe the massive intended use of Tamiflu blanket will not work in densely crowded populations to stave off a pandemic: it will be administered too late, if at all, and there will not be enough of it in the double and triple required dosages required, to have any impact.

My view of the State Department news release which summarizes the WHO meeting in Geneva, November 20-23rd….snore, ho-hum, what meeting ? The US, European nations, China, and primary manufacturers of influenza vaccine will do what it takes, no matter how long it takes, when the time comes, to preserve their social and economic structure and military security as world leaders, regardless of improvements or modifications to the GISN or how, Indonesia in particular, whines. Health Minister Supari may think she has an edge over everyone on dangerous influenza virus strains, but she is only jeopardizing her entire population by her intransigence.

Her refusal to provide critical life saving H5N1 strains during an actual emerging influenza pandemic emergency (especially emanating from her islands), would be met with abrupt extreme force. No further negotiations or discussions at that point. It would be all over for her and her president as well. She needs to understand that people are not going to screw around with her or her government, when half the world’s population may be suddenly faced with falling deadly ill, and her country is one of the main culprits. I’d be willing to wager a hefty amount of money that the US CIA, Russian FSB and GRU (formerly KGB), Chinese MSS and PLA, Israeli Mossad, GB MI6 and SIS, and the German Stasi – are all ready to pounce when and if necessary.

None of them “play” fair and don’t give a rat’s behind about moral’s, ethics, or rich vs poor nations, or any sense of fairness.

It may all end up like the old saying – “you are either part of the problem, or you are part of the solution”.

Wulfgang

 

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