Sunday, January 13, 2008

January 12 Flu Update

UK is afraid bird flu will hit their famous black swans.

11 peacocks are dead in India, but they say there's no bird flu.

An Air Force base in Guam continues to work on bird flu containment.


At 2:40 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


Judging from your two articles about Great Britain and India today, I believe we have two countries, unfortunately, who have very defective H5N1 surveillance programs. I definitely do not believe that GB’s veterinary oversight agency, DEFRA, is conducting as comprehensive and thorough testing as they should – a lot of H5N1 seems to be slipping below their radar on a regular basis.

As far as India, well, we have two significant outbreaks in their western and northern regions of their country – I guess India really isn’t aware of this yet, so I will inform them: in spite of their denials, the area in far West NW Bengal, north of Calcutta and right next to BANGLADESH (approx 100 kilometers west) , probably has H5N1 poultry infections spreading throughout their farms as I type this. The other infected area is in the northern part of India, just north of Delhi (near Punjab) – about 150 kilometers east of PAKISTAN. The proximities of these two outbreaks in India is no coincidence, both Pakistan and Bangladesh, as well as most other countries in that regions are all significantly infected with H5N1.

Don’t tell any of this to Dr. Bernard Vallat of the OIE (the head of world animal health) though, he’s still stuck in his “the H5N1 has extremely stabilized and the risk of an avian pandemic is overblown” imaginary vision. He reminds me of the captain of the Titanic, kind of asleep in his cabin, right before the iceberg hit.

The other thing that I find quite interesting is your Guam, Andersen AFB, article concerning their announcement of a base-wide disease containment emergency exercise. Guam is located centrally, only about 1,000 nm from Indonesia, 1,300 nm from Japan, 1,500 nm from Taiwan, 1,500 nm from S Korea, and only 1,600 nm from Foochow, China.

I do not think for a moment that it is a coincidence that Guam and Hawaii have been conducting numerous pandemic disease outbreak exercises. The isolation of both islands, as well as their extreme military importance, and proximity to China and Asia (where H5N1 is endemic), place them both very high on the strategic national interest list.

It’s a good thing Colonel Walter Cayce, 36th Medical Group Commander, knows what he’s doing and is assessing and measuring the risk properly. We need about a couple thousand more of these type individuals, spread throughout North America.



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