Thursday, December 13, 2007

December 13 Flu Update

More from Pakistan....the two patients there are now dead and they are brothers. They are the first deaths in the country, based on this report.

ProMed on this report...note mod comment.

The Indonesian man reported sick (and getting better) yesterday is now dead.

ProMed on two recent deaths in Indonesia.

Bird flu is reviving in Vietnam.

ProMed with updates from a wide variety of countries (nothing apparently new).

Bird flu is not affecting the Saudi economy.

India says it will share knowledge on fighting bird flu.

An alert reader sent me this on replikins and flu mortality.

Hungary is reporting that it is offering Indonesia bird flu assistance.

A local government in Canada has a flu plan.

Revere notes that docs are reading lots in the professional journals, but only one flu article, and that one is peripheral at best.


At 5:37 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


The events there in Pakistan seem to heating up quite rapidly, and it’s not only about the two brothers that recently died of bird flu – they are a completely different set of brothers, than the ones that died back in the October/November time frame.

If I have my facts correct, back in October, we had two clear infected human-to-human clusters being reported in Pakistan from the news reports: cluster one is the veterinarian and three brothers. The veterinarian is recovering, the two brothers died, and the third brother was a US citizen, who subsequently returned to the US (yep, believe it). All were infected. Cluster two, was a culler who assisted the veterinarian, who infected his daughter and another unnamed male companion. So, we have two clear clusters, and these days, we don’t need the WHO or CDC “snail-mail” to figure it out. This represents at least 6-7 people in the October Abbottaba event, and subsequent to that, outbreaks and possible additional illnesses have been reported in the cities of Islamabad, Murree, Mansehra and surrounding areas. The Pakistan Institute of Health, has just issued instructions to the health departments in all provinces, to place all hospitals on H5N1 alert. This means we could have a very bad situation developing in Pakistan, and the clusters are extensively much wider than revealed – just my opinion.

We have a much larger situation developing Orange. We also have the first confirmed H5N1 case reported out of Burma, a 7 yr old female, who fell in November, and has since recovered. The cases of suspected human-to-human transmission in Pakistan, China, Indonesia, and Egypt, are becoming noticeable. The repeated poultry outbreaks of bird flu are increasing and widening their geographical range, any way you examine it. At this rate, the WHO will have to start considering elevation of the Pandemic Alert to Level IV, based on “Evidence of increased human-to-human transmission”.

The biggest concern I believe everyone should have, is that it is very apparent that many of these countries that are reporting clear human to human clusters, are reporting them months later than they first occurred, or not at all – in the case of China and Indonesia. At some point, the WHO will have to recognize this fact, make their command decision and raise the threat level. If they do not, they face the likelihood of losing complete credibility. The clusters are still relatively small now in number, but the index cases are becoming more identifiable – even from reading the MSM reports.

So, the key questions are: how many clusters does it take and how large must they be, before the WHO start their deliberations to raise the pandemic threat level ? I’d be willing to bet this miss this by mile, because they are too cautious, conservative, political and subjective in their approach, and they are treating these situations as if they were a seasonal influenza with the usual H1 or H2 epidemic characteristics that they are most familiar with.

They are banking on having plenty of time for scientific confirmations, extensive data analysis and group-consensus-type deliberations, and that they will have the opportunity to glide comfortably and linearly through Pandemic Levels IV, V, and VI. I really do not believe they will have this luxury, because at some point in the very near future, the H5N1 situation is going to be explosive, and the WHO, HHS and CDC better be on top of it.

At some point, they gotta stop reading the rule book and get in the game. Oh, and they gotta figure out who the Quarterback is, also.


At 5:39 PM, Anonymous revere said...

If you ever find out what a repliken is, please tell me. These folks have been issuing PR releases for more than a year warning that the pandemic was on the way. Maybe there's something to their product (the repliken idea) but I can't figure out what it is. Anyone?


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