Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Swine Flu Hysteria Was Totally Justifiable

From NYmag.com: With the benefit of hindsight and research, it may be time to admit that the people who responded to the swine flu pandemic of 2009 with utmost caution and functional hysteria weren't all that crazy. In a new study published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, CDC researchers write thatthe H1N1 virus likely claimed around 280,000 lives, or about fifteen times more than the 18,500 confirmed in labs.

The numbers are being highlighted now “To improve the public health response during future pandemics in parts of the world that suffer more deaths, and to increase the public's awareness of the importance of influenza prevention,” said the researcher's lead author Fatimah Dawood, a CDC epidemiologist.

Note to self: When a global virus is given a provocative name involving a farm animal, figure likelihood of death is much higher than reported.

Swine flu death toll revised to nearly 300,000 people

PARIS: The influenza A subtype H1N1 ''swine flu'' 2009 pandemic probably claimed more than a quarter of a million lives - 15 times more than the 18,500 reported, according to a paper in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal.

The elevated toll underlined the need for better planning and vaccine distribution, said a team of epidemiologists and physicians who made a statistical model based on population and infection estimates to present what they believe is a more accurate picture of the pandemic's reach.

''This study is one of the first to provide a global estimate of deaths caused by the 2009 H1N1 virus,'' lead author Fatimah Dawood of the US government's Centres for Disease Control and Prevention said.

Read more

Global H1N1 death toll may be 15 times higher than previously reported

An Algerian doctor prepares a vaccine dose
against the H1N1 flu in 2009 in a hospital in Algiers.

The actual number of deaths from the 2009 H1N1 pandemic might have been more than 15 times higher than previously thought, according to a study released on Monday.
When the new H1N1 virus, often referred to as swine flu, spread around the world three years ago, 18,500 deaths were reported to the World Health Organization in the first 16 months of the pandemic.  Based on this new study, published online in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, researchers estimate 284,400 people actually died in the first year the virus was circulating around the world.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Times of India: New cases of AH1N1 in India

Two new cases of swine flu have been reported in the city. Senior officials in the ministry of health and family welfare said the patients were admitted to a city hospital last week with symptoms of the viral influenza and laboratory tests were conducted with samples of their nasal swab.

No deaths have been reported yet in this season. Delhi health minister A K Walia has said he is soon going to hold a meeting of the health officials concerned to discuss the steps required to tackle a possible increase in the cases of swine flu and dengue. The first dengue case for this season was also reported last week at AIIMS.

"The H1N1 virus was present in the environment. Moderate temperature and humidity are conducive to spreading of the influenza virus. Last year, the first case of the influenza virus was reported around June.

Rest of this article in The Times of India here

Monday, March 28, 2011

El Universal: Venezuela confirms 415 cases of influenza AH1N1

Eugenia Sader, Venezuela's Minister of Health
Eugenia Sader, Venezuela's Minister of Health, said that the cases of influenza AH1N1 have spread throughout 19 states, adding that no new deaths were reported.

The Minister of Health confirmed at a press conference that there are 415 cases of influenza AH1N1 nationwide, spread in 19 Venezuelan states. She said that no new deaths have been reported. "The number of deaths remains unchanged," she added.

The top health official said that there are confirmed cases of AH1N1 in the states of: Mérida (189 cases); Capital District (77); Miranda (69); Trujillo (15); Táchira (10); Carabobo (8); Lara (7); Guárico (5); Aragua (5); Vargas (5); Yaracuy (5); Cojedes (5); Zulia (4); Amazonas (3); Nueva Esparta (2); Barinas (2); Anzoátegui (2); Sucre (1) and Portuguesa (1). The figures corresponded to January 1-March 27.

Venezuela's President Hugo Chávez on Sunday urged people during his weekly program Aló Presidente (Hello, President) to meet hygiene standards recommended by the Ministry of Health and welcomed the cooperation of private hospitals.

Chávez called government officials to intensify the prevention campaign. The Venezuelan head of state devoted some five minutes to give recommendations related to AH1N1 in his Sunday program, which lasted more than 6 hours.

Meanwhile, for the second consecutive week, classes will remain suspended in primary schools and high schools in the state of Mérida, southwestern Venezuela, as a preventive measure after the outbreak of AH1N1 in the Andean region.

The Andes University also announced that the academic and administrative activities have been suspended until further notice.

Read this article at El Universal

My first post in 144 days

Apologies to everybody that expected to find updates on the new AH1N1 outbreak in Mexico in here.

I will try to follow the AH1N1-news more closely again from now on.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mecca: Two pilgrims down with H1N1 influenza virus

MECCA: The health ministry has detected the H1N1 influenza virus in two female pilgrims from a European and east Asian country, while an African was found to have contracted cholera.

The Saudi Gazette reported today that the women, aged 26 and 52, were infected in their countries of origin.

It said the ministry's monitoring unit diagnosed the duo as soon as they arrived, and were given the necessary treatment at a hospital.

One of them has since been discharged while the other is in stable condition, said the report from Riyadh.
The Saudi Gazette said the unit was determining how the 41-year-old man, currently undergoing treatment, was infected with the disease.

Read more: New Straits Times 

Thursday, November 4, 2010

LankaJournal: A threat of spreading Influenza AH1N1

Sri Lanka's Ministry of Health warns that there is a threat of spreading Influenza AH1N1 in the island.
The Unit of the Ministry states that all hospital staff is already kept on alert regarding this.
According to the Ministry sources 15 patients have been found from various parts of the island. They have been called over for treatment with fever and cold who were identified as Influenza AH1N1 patients following investigations.
The Ministry of Health makes a special request from the public to concentrate on medical treatment immediately if symptoms such as fever, cough, cold and headache are exposed.
Read More www.h1n1now.com

BBC: Child sick with swine flu dies

A child who was diagnosed with swine flu just over a week ago has died, the Public Health Agency has confirmed.
The eight-year-old girl was a pupil at Ceara School in Lurgan, County Armagh - a special school for children with severe learning disabilities.
Twenty people from Northern Ireland died in last year's swine flu outbreak, including a number of children with severe learning difficulties.
The girl was one of two people diagnosed with the virus last week.
The other case, involving a man from Northern Ireland, was not linked.

Read the rest here.

Here we go again...

It seems the right time to re-open this blog.
See the next blog...

Monday, May 10, 2010

Final entry (for now)

A little over a year ago, in the midst of the Mexican flue/ Swine-flue/ AH1N1-hype, I started a blog with news and views, rumours, predictions and solutions about the 2009 outbreak of A/H1N1.

A year has passed and most sources have stopped updating their websites about the flue.

It is time I stop updating too. This is my last entry in this blog.

But if H1N1 will re-appear, or if a new flue-virus will appear. be assured that this blog will reopen.

Thank you for visiting, reading and commenting on this blog.

Signing off,

The cost of the H1N1 Scare Tactics

Figures have recently been released that show how much money the government of Canada spent on the H1N1 flu pandemic. The feds spent $37 million on advertising and communications. This was more than was spent on anti-virals ($14 million), preparing emergency responses ($8.6 million) and outbreak management ($21 million).

After the figures were released, Dr. Richard Schabas, a former Ontario medical officer of health, renewed his criticism that the government spent too much money after the flu outbreak had finished. In the end, although the H1N1 did qualify as a worldwide pandemic, its effect on the vast majority of those who caught it was mild. Many people had this particular strain of flu and didn’t even know it. The number of people who died from H1N1 was about one tenth of the number of Canadians who die each year from ordinary flu.

There is nothing unusual in the fact that the government spent so much money advertising in order to tell people where they should go and get their flu shots. It was perfectly consistent with the way democratic governments operate in the 21st century.

Read the rest of this article 

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

AOL News: Did Hyping H1N1 Create A Dangerous Flu Fatigue?

With the World Health Organization warning yet again this week that the H1N1 virus has yet to reach its peak, a flu season that's milder than average hardly seems that way. Now, the nearly yearlong coverage of H1N1 has left some worried that future influenza outbreaks will be met with ambivalent flu fatigue among the public.

'It's inevitable that there's H1N1 fatigue,' Dr. Robert Daum, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Chicago Medical Center, told AOL News. 'Health officials, the media and the public are all stuck between a rock and a hard place on this one.'

No doubt, the H1N1 virus was a legitimate health threat. The WHO estimates that 16,000 people have died from the flu strain, which targeted children and teens rather than the elderly. The virus was also prevalent during spring and summer months, whereas flues usually peak in the winter.

Complete article:
AOL News: Did Hyping H1N1 Create A Dangerous Flu Fatigue?

KRDO.com: Another Outbreak Of H1N1 Could Be Coming Soon

H1N1 has been very quite since the start of 2010 but that does not mean that it has gone anywhere.

The first out break of H1N1 was in April of 2009 with another wave of outbreaks in October, and with the history of pandemics a third outbreak or wave could happen before the end of the season.

'Based on history of previous pandemics sometimes there has been what we call a third wave, and we have not seen that yet. We can't for sure write H1N1 off, at least for this particular winter season we are going to have to wait and see.' This is according to Dr. Bernadette Albanese with the El Paso County Department of Health and Environment.

The best way to prevent getting the flu is still getting vaccinated. Other ways that can prevent the flu, washing your hands, covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze and if you are sick, stay home and get better before you go back to work or school.

KRDO.com: Another Outbreak Of H1N1 Could Be Coming Soon