Thursday, January 10, 2008

January 9 Flu Update

A teenager is hospitalized with suspected bird flu.

ProMed has this also. Note mod comment on 81% reported fatality rate in Indonesia, as opposed to 47% in Vietnam.

The last two cases in China were apparently due to human-human transmission in "close contact." We've certainly seen this before, but is it more common now, or are we being fooled by randomness?

Revere blogs a new test for flu, which should help us learn how the disease spreads and contribute to our knowledge base.

Polish bird flu is under control, it is said.

A culling exercise was held in Singapore to prepare for the bird flu.

Tests confirm that US man who attended bird flu funeral in Pakistan never had the virus.

A University of Minnesota lab is now ready for the fight against bird flu.

The Federal Government in Nigeria is releasing funds to a state for bird flu fight.


At 7:46 PM, Blogger Wulfgang said...


I mentioned this observation before, but it is worth repeating again, since CIDRAP has picked up on it also: the Indonesian CFR statistic of 81% for H5N1 is a glaring example of how the total number of infected humans is being understated. If one were to “normalize” the data to Vietnam and Egypt (i.e., down in the 45% range where it probably should be), then it appears that Indonesia’s total number of human infections is understated by a whopping 80-100 cases. What else is the logical conclusion ?

I will buy the official positions and statements of both the Chinese government and the WHO rep Hans Troedsson, that the son probably infected his father through “close contact”. However, this could be a translation problem between languages, but then why does the Chinese government say, “the outbreak was brought under control”, when there was no proven sustained human-to-human transmission, no evidence of virus mutation, or even no evidence of infected poultry in the area reported ? Still, the explanations are very strange…indeed.

My final comment is about the University of Minnesota Bio-Level 3 necropsy lab, which will be used for diseased birds and other animals. The article goes into quite a bit a detail about the safety and control features (air, water and PPE), but never does exactly reveal how they intend on disposing their contaminated birds that are in the waste disposal bins.

Do they incinerate them, subject them to chemical decomposition, or just bury someplace in a back lot between the twin cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul ? Next time I’m wandering around the Mall of America, I may make a little side trip and “nose around” a little. Just curious…



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