Sunday, December 23, 2007

December 22 Flu Update

Slow news day.....

ProMed on the cluster rule-out in Indonesia.

New avian outbreak in Poland.

Jordan says it is on alert for bird flu.

Is a powder vaccine in the works for bird flu.

Massachusetts story on potential Tamiflu shortages.


At 5:56 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


Indeed it is a quiet day on the news front. I suspect the H5N1 virus does take a respite for the Holidays though, and the new year will bring more interesting news.

A quick comment about your short list of news today though: the saga of Massachusetts and their lack of preparedness is a little unreal, especially with all of the wealth in that state. Massachusetts is third highest in per capita income in the US (right behind Connecticut and New Jersey) and money should not be an issue. It is easy to visualize a huge domestic emergency there if a pandemic were to emerge next week: the only antiviral’s that would be available would be out of the SNS, no emergency beds, very few respirators, and few means (if any) to test for biological threats.

I can believe politics plays into the issue, as well as penny pinching, but a Democratic stronghold with a such a bunch of savvy Senator’s as Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Barney Frank, James McGovern and John Tierney, not jumping in there and “making something happen”, just baffles me. They definitely need to place a discreet phone to Frank Singleton, Health Director, and Tom Lyons, advisor to the Department of Health there, and get them tuned in to the right frequency. Singleton and Lyons just don’t seem overly concerned – except maybe for a fat state pension.

I gotta admit Orange, you called the Poland situation right from the very beginning – a lot worse than it first appeared. Must be intuition, a good guess, or you got good Polish connections. If you hit another one right, we’ll have to call you the “ Big O”


At 4:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Human-to-Human Transmitted Avian Flu – We have to move from a Cure Strategy to a Prevention Strategy before it is too late

The strategy to prevent hundreds of millions of people dying across the globe from the Avian Flu pandemic is totally flawed. This reliance that governments around the world have placed on predominantly vaccination (cure) only is a decision that history will record as one of the most insane and insidious decisions that has ever been taken by our political leaders. This assertion is based upon the facts that the eventual human-to-human killer virus that will emerge will be a new strain due to the fact that viruses constantly mutate and that owing to the initial incubation period for bird flu to show its ugly face, the virus will have spread like wildfire across the world through millions travelling internationally on a daily basis. Indeed, the avian flu strain is 20 times more virulent than the 1917 Spanish flu that killed between 50 million and 100 million people, but where this time, literally hundreds of millions will literally perish with this ill thought out strategy by our political leaders and governments. What should have been undertaken is that this highly contagious disease should have been addressed at its source (prevention) and where history again will confirm this eventual conclusion. Unfortunately by then, this terrible event will have taken place. Governments should rethink therefore before it is too late and adopt predominantly a ‘field’ strategy, for this is the only strategy that will work and stop the unimaginable happening. Governments have been warned continuously, but where they do not wish to listen due to the powerful overtones delivered to our political leaders by the giant pharmaceuticals in their quest for profits (or selfish greed dependant on which point-of-view one wishes to take). One has to remember also that since 2003 the human mortality rate through the bird flu virus has been 62% and where only 38 people on average out of every hundred has survived. Overall therefore it has to be said that these vast profit-orientated pharmaceutical companies have not stopped any of these deaths through their highly expensive drugs and where things will be no different when the eventual pandemic arrives. It is hoped therefore that for the sake of humankind, that a major sea change takes place within the thinking of our political leaders in 2008, from one of cure to prevention, and before time literally runs out on us all. These are not fear factors but factors derived from pure logic and facts determined by some of the leading authoritive thinkers on the subject.

Dr David Hill
World Innovation Foundation
Bern, Switzerland
UK Postal Address: P O Box A60, Huddersfield,
HD1 1XJ, United Kingdom
UK Tel:0044(0)1484 537181
28th December 2007


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