Saturday, December 01, 2007

November 30 Flu Update

WHO says bird flu remains entrenched in six countries.

CIDRAP has this report as well.

Nabarro said H5N1 is being "continuously transmitted" in at least half the districts of Indonesia, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) report .

"Intensive control efforts—including vaccination of poultry—are being mounted in these settings [countries where the virus is entrenched] to get the disease under control and eliminate outbreaks when they occur," the UN said. "Under present conditions, most other countries are able to control outbreaks when they occur in other settings."

Reuters quoted the report as saying, "Outbreaks are being detected more rapidly and the response is more effective. However, animal health services are still substandard in most countries—they lack necessary regulatory frameworks, budgets, laboratory capacity and implementation of biosecurity measures."


Revere blogs all this, saying that some people are tired of hearing about the need to prepare, which has been going on for years. When does a new record play?

Romania says it has determined it has no bird flu on a farm but is testing....you guessed it....a cat.

More culling in Saudi Arabia, where outbreaks continue.

More on the source of infection in Britain--Telegraph notes that they don't know, so migratory birds cannot be ruled out.

Vietnam is turning its attention to bird flu and its duck population.

Azerbaijan reports an absence of bird flu.

Wild story of Irish man who is deaf and had suspected bird flu symptoms while in SE Asia.

1 Comments:

At 6:28 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...

Orange;

A couple of things really stick out in your first two articles about Dr. Nabarro’s comments and the content of the UN and World Bank report.

First, HPAI is firmly entrenched in six countries around the world – listed are only five – Indonesia, Egypt, Nigeria, areas of China (surprise, surprise), and Bangladesh. I wonder who the sixth country is ? My guess is Vietnam, and if so, why not mention it.

Second, Nabarro states that “H5N1 is being continuously transmitted in at least half the districts of Indonesia”. Well, the only surprise there is that he mentioned only half, it’s probably all of them. But Nabarro goes on to say that “ intensive control efforts – including vaccination of poultry – are being mounted in these settings”. In the case of Indonesia, they are in fact using Chinese poultry vaccines, which apparently are not working in Vietnam or China itself… so don’t we have a case of the blind-leading-the-blind here ? God only knows how hundreds of millions of ducks and chickens (as well as all other four legged critters) are pooping and plopping out high-octane HPAI H5N1 in China, Indonesia and Vietnam already.

Third, Nabarro is quoted in the CIDRAP article saying the following, “ Second, they must prepare for influenza and other possible pandemics”. Now this kind of comment really makes me tingle a little, especially after a new mutated strain of Ebola just popped up in Uganda this week. A dual premonition perhaps on his part ?

Fourth observation, apparently the UN report was assembled based on data from the 143 member countries, of which only 95% (i.e. 135) stated they were “planning for a pandemic”. I wonder who the eight are, who are NOT PLANNING for a pandemic of any kind ? Now that would be a good tidbit of information for all of us to know.

My final comment is that even when Revere is apparently tired, he still spins a good article. One sentence in his commentary sticks out above all others, when he says; “ Most of us are tired of hearing the world’s not ready”. And he’s absolutely right. I gave up about two and one half years when I helped develop our own federal agency’s pandemic influenza preparation and operations plans. It’s about 300 pages of prime fodder written in excellent understandable English, but destined for the dust bin. We have conducted no real operational exercises and I know it not executable – like most other federal and state agency plans. When I was in the military we not only wrote strategic war and battle plans, we exercised them over and over. Not so with the our state, federal and local community pandemic plans… we do not have adequate hospital and medical supplies to last longer than a week; our hospital emergency rooms will be overwhelmed, we will not be able to distribute the limited antivirals efficiently and timely, there will be no vaccine for the masses; ninety eight per cent of all people are totally unprepared to hunker down for longer than 3-4 days without panicking; and we have no adequate plans to control rioting and panic when the walking poor in the densely populated cities run out of food in about 2-3 days.

Well I’m one of the two percent of the US population who is ready for almost anything.

And just like the Titanic saga, I’m a brave person (a good crew member), but I’m not stupid. It would behoove everyone to get their lifeboats ready and know where they are located. Otherwise… well…, you all know the rest of the Titanic history and how it ends.

Wulfgang

 

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