Due to the rapid spread of the strain of the Avian Flu that humans can catch in the same general area as the last pandemic, various governments are
initiating plans to keep the risk of infection minimalized in their countries. (Pandemic means a worldwide epidemic.) So far, 8 Asian countries
(Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam) have infected poultry, with 45 human deaths among people who caught the
illness (Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam (ref: supporting link 2), a strain of flu known as H5N1. In each case, the humans infected caught the strain
directly from poultry on their own property. There is no evidence of this strain having mutated to a disease spread solely by humans. Until it
does, a pandemic is unlikely. As of yet, the US is only beginning to test its vaccination, so there is no assurance that it will work. Europe
(Flupan) is just starting to make their vaccine for the Avian flu.
US ready to test bird flu vaccine
24/02/2005 - 07:48:22
The US government is getting ready to test a bird flu vaccine and stockpiling both vaccine and antiviral drugs as the threat grows that a deadly
strain of Avian influenza will begin spreading from Asia.
Two million doses of vaccine are being stored in bulk form for possible emergency use and to test whether it maintains its potency, officials said
United Nations officials warned that the Asian bird flu outbreak poses the “gravest possible danger” of becoming a global pandemic.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
I have been saying for quite a while that we are long overdue another pandemic. We had the Spanish Flu in1918-1919 (half the dead were young and
healthy before the flu hit and is the closest pandemic strain to the Avian Flu (ref: supporting link 2)), Asian Flu in 1957-1958, Hong Kong Flu in
1968-1969, and now the potential for the Avian flu. Again, there is no guarantee that the precaution measures will work, at all. This is just a
bunch of hope based on a fairly realistic fear.
As of right now, the best contingency plan is Canada's, as it has been in place since the SARS scare. The plan estimates that a fourth of the
population will contract the disease: 14,000 deaths, 46,000 hospitalizations, and about 3 million contracting the disease. The US is copying the plan
(ref: supporting link 3). While it is a relief to see governments moving on aide, as soon as they can, it may not be enough.... but then this could
just be another SARS or Ebola scare, and this strain will stay mainly in Asia. This reaction was a bit late from these governments, in reference to
aide for the already infected countries, and there are still countries that are doing nothing to prepare. It's also finally been proven that ducks
do carry the disease, but do not have any noticeable symptoms (ref: supporting link 4). If they are just carriers, I suspect an Avian Flu vaccine may
be derived from them.
Another Avian virus that so many were worried about some time back is West Nile Virus. It is in this country, especially in the New Orleans area, and
it does spread to humans. Out of the majority of the humans diagnosed with it, around 75% of them die (perhaps many are not diagnosed until it's
too late). The reason you do not hear about it is because so few people noticeably catch it. Yet it's left its country of origin and is lose in a
densely populated area. If the West Nile Virus can make it to the US, then so can the Avian Flu. Just be sure to thoroughly cook your fowl.
Related News Links:
Bird flu has potential to kill up to 7 million
Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
Flu Epidemic Key to US Military Strategy
Illegals, an epidemic Disease on America
[edit on 26-2-2005 by Banshee]