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NEWS: Government Plans for Flu Epidemic: Update

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posted on Mar, 7 2005 @ 10:05 PM
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Emergency responders from 16 Canadian cities met today to discuss the bird flu pandemic that is expected to strike soon. The worst case scenario is that schools will be closed and transportation halted. Doctors likely will need to ration their services and hospitals are expected to be overcrowded. Alberta's health minister said what worried her most was public ignorance.

 



www.cbc.ca
Representatives from Canada's 16 largest cities meeting in Edmonton on Monday raised some disturbing questions as they discussed what to do when the next flu pandemic hits.

"What worries me most is, in fact, the ignorance of people in the public, who assume that if they get sick there'll be something there for them," said Iris Evans, Alberta's minister of health. "They don't realize the devastation this could be if they're not taking care of their health today."

After the First World War, as many as 40 million people died in the Spanish flu pandemic. ...Despite advances in medicine, doctors expect as many or perhaps more could die in the next pandemic, triggered by a change in the flu virus that leaves everyone vulnerable. ...Several delegates on the front line of Canada's response admitted they lie awake at night, worrying what a pandemic will mean for the country.



Please visit the link provided for the complete story.



No one can accurately predict when the flu epidemic will strike, but there is an almost 100% consensus about which strain will go pandemic. By most accounts, the H5N1 bird flu strain will hit soon.

The epidemic will spread world wide very quickly once the virus mutates to allow easy person to person transmission - and several cases have been described recently.



Flu cases rise in US; Peak may be Ahead

The new H5N1 virus has spread to 10 countries since cropping up in Hong Kong eight years ago. More than 70 percent of the known human cases have been fatal. And though most of the victims have had direct contact with birds, researchers have recently described several instances of person-to-person transmission.


New Fears of a Bird-Flu Pandemic





Despite repeated warnings from the World Health Organization (WHO) and scientists around the world, few countries are properly prepared to met an epidemic emergency.

Unfortunately, our systems are set up to respond to immediate and present dangers - and as with December's tsunami in Asia - by that time it's too late to do anything effective in the public interest.

Public ignorance is a serious issue. Popular political wisdom says people will panic if they're fully informed about 'complicated' matters, and decrees that dangers be downplayed, underplayed and minimized - primarily to protect business and "the economy." Such policies leave people unprepared and in a way, set them up.



UPDATE:

Vietnam: Two new bird flu cases without

symptoms


Vietnamese health officials said Wednesday the 61-year-old widow of a bird flu victim has also tested positive for the H5N1

virus, but showed no symptoms.

Earlier in the day, officials reported that an 80-year-old man - who had two infected grandchildren - also had the virus but did

not fall ill.

The two cases raised concerns that avian influenza may be more widespread than originally believed.

"It's quite possible that some people are falling sick and their symptoms are very light and they don't end up in hospital," WHO

regional spokesman Peter Cordingley said earlier this week.


www.thanhniennews.com...
thestar.com.my.../2005/3/9/latest/21904Vietnamre&sec=latest
feeds.bignewsnetwork.com...

...Carriers without symptoms mean the epidemic can spread quickly before being identified.



Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
NEWS: Bush Pushes Wrong Flu Vaccine to American People
TOP STORY: Nurse Possible First Human to Human Transmission of Avian Flu
SCI/TECH: Flu Vaccine Technology: Who's Blocking its Use?
SCI/TECH: Russian Expert Fears Flu Epidemic May Kill Over A Billion People This Year.

[edit on 9-3-2005 by soficrow]




posted on Mar, 7 2005 @ 10:16 PM
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If only we had enough living microbiologists.....

Its almost spring, when do they expect this to hit, in the Summer?



posted on Mar, 7 2005 @ 10:30 PM
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Well so far I have been lucky I had a touch of it but that was it, so I wonder if is going to get worst after all the state I am at is wide spread.



posted on Mar, 7 2005 @ 10:33 PM
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Originally posted by dgtempe
If only we had enough living microbiologists.....

Its almost spring, when do they expect this to hit, in the Summer?




Hard to tell. Could be next week, maybe next season. ...Public reports are starting to come in now, and admissions of bird flu infections. ...Is good reason to suspect that cases would be covered up until the numbers started to reach epidemic proportions - but because of standard denial policies, it's very hard to read the true situation.

...I remember human-to-human transmission being reported last year - leaks about it being in pigs (usaually the crossover species), all kinds of mixed messages and contradictory information. ...I'd say be prepared, then relax.


.



posted on Mar, 7 2005 @ 11:48 PM
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its crunch time.time for the world to put there heads together.the plague walks the earth again and does not care about you and me.this would be one thing the world can get together on.it will affect all of us in one way or another.lets start preparing for its face on the world stage.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 12:25 AM
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What can we do to prepare ourselves if it constentley mutates from case to case. Doing the normal procedures will only go so far and will not work in this case of the "flu."


-Dagger



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 10:18 AM
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Ya know...
when i first heard about the bird flu, and its deathly progression...
i kept thinking... so everyone just needs to stop kissing birds, and all will be well.

Of course, i am sure that many people in the world still have this MISGUIDED veiw.

education about the misnomer of "bird flu" needs to be addressed
maybe call it the "you're screwed" virus, and people would listen more...

70% FATALITY makes this worse than most of the man made bio and chemical weapons out there...

makes me wonder (as others do also) who mutated this? is it just a fluke of nature? mother natures revenge? plot to rid the world of overpopulation?

we all need to be careful. When this hits your area, you may not have the news media telling you... in fact you may not know, until the CDC buses arrive and start setting up tent cities.

avoid eating any raw vegatables that might have bird poo on them. Remove outer leaves or skin.
do not clean your car with "wet wipes" or anything that can allow the bird poo to get on your hands...

remember... these are little germs that wont die from antibacterial soap... so the best defense, is aviod any contact with anything bird related...

when your kitty brings you a gift of a dead bird, put it in a sealed baggie, without touching it. (and hopefully it wont cross to cats, or we are all screwed)

and for god sake... love your birds...just don't LOVE your birds...

I think it is also time to put away the courtesy of a deadly handshake and adopt a safer "salute" or symbol greeting, like gangs use...

YO'



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 10:22 AM
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Originally posted by dgtempe
If only we had enough living microbiologists.....

Its almost spring, when do they expect this to hit, in the Summer?


There are plenty of microbiologists. They also tend to not panic about things that don't require panic. This would apparently be one of them.

There is no mention of bird flu in this month's American Society for Microbiology journal. That journal is aimed specifically at professional microbiologists and the news in there tends to be a good indication of where research interests and concerns are at the moment. Its isn't bird flu.

There is no mention of bird flu so far as I can tell in this week's Science. Science is the premier scientific journal in the United States and tends to be very up-to-date on hot topics and concerns in the broader scientific community. I believe the cover this week is the new "white smoker" deep sea hydrothermal communities that were recently discovered. No bird flu.

There is one paper in the latest journal of Emergining Infectious Diseases on bird flu. EID is the CDC's journal aimed at professional epidemiologists, doctors, and microbiologists working in the field of emerging disease. It is there you go to get a grasp on what the CDC is worried about. Guess what the paper on bird flu is about? It is about developing a better rumor detection system worldwide to prevent unneccessary panic over trivial cases of bird flu. The authors conclude that world transit could have been majorly and unnceccessarily affected by these bird flu rumors (e.g. the original post here), when, in fact, there is cause for concern, but not panic. In other words, no global pandemic here folks.

It's on the radar, but it isn't going to end the world, and professional microbiologists and epidemiologists are not freaking out.

By the way, there are four FDA approved antivirals with proven activity against Avian influenza. So it isn't like we're all going to die anyway. If it got bad the pharma companies make a killing, and we get stuck with a big tab for antivirals, but hell, at least you'll live.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 10:22 AM
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Isn't this the 3rd time since 1998 that the WHO has stated that the avian flu may become a pandemic? Hasn't happened yet. It's no wonder many countries aren't taking it seriously. However, perhaps the newly reported case of the nurse who cared for patients also contracting the strain making it the first case of it travelling from human to human will kick start more countries into taking is seriously.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 10:33 AM
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Originally posted by rg73

By the way, there are four FDA approved antivirals with proven activity against Avian influenza. So it isn't like we're all going to die anyway. If it got bad the pharma companies make a killing, and we get stuck with a big tab for antivirals, but hell, at least you'll live.


guess you didn't catch the part about 70% fatality... after the use of antivirals...

load a six shooter with 4 bullets, then aim at your head, and pull the trigger...
those are your odds, (actually to get close to the true odds, you would have to put 5 bullets in...
the latest fatality rates are something like 78%... (in countries that had less access to the antivirals...)

so, as with many antivirals... they offer little help in survival...

but you are right that Rumors and panic are the worst things to fear for now...



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 10:42 AM
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Originally posted by sensfan

Isn't this the 3rd time since 1998 that the WHO has stated that the avian flu may become a pandemic? Hasn't happened yet. It's no wonder many countries aren't taking it seriously.





Scientists are - and they've been issuing warnings since fibromusculat dysplasia (FMD) first appeared in US domestic turkeys in 1980.

From FMD in US Turkeys to Bird Flu in Asia





However, perhaps the newly reported case of the nurse who cared for patients also contracting the strain making it the first case of it travelling from human to human will kick start more countries into taking is seriously.




We're being damage-controlled. That report was old news before it was released. From March 3:


"The new H5N1 virus has spread to 10 countries since cropping up in Hong Kong eight years ago. More than 70 percent of the known human cases have been fatal. And though most of the victims have had direct contact with birds, researchers have recently described several instances of person-to-person transmission.


33 states reporting widespread illness, according to CDC


.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 11:25 AM
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The more i read, the more I am deciding to go vegan...

The virus is able to transmit to almost all animals. So my previous question about my cats is answered... poor kitty needs to stop his bird catching habit...

sofi: for clarification, the 33 states showing viral evidence is the influenza virus...not the bird flu... but it does show how fast this virus can spread, and how many people can die from a normal seasonal affliction.

your links on turkey FMD and bird flu are educational...
I had no idea that FMD was already in turkeys... but I digress...

the bird flu will be one to watch out for... thanks for the heads up...

and be careful... the canooks seem to be the first to be in danger...

any word on whether chickens can spread this by being eaten... (does cooking destroy the virus)?



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 11:28 AM
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who mutated this? is it just a fluke of nature?

Well nature can do some odd things. I watched a program where this guy tracked the Nipha virus (cousin to ebola and HIV). It killed a village of 100 people in a very short time. He heard a rumor about a pig farm nearby where the pigs were acting strangely. When he went to the pig farm, he found that the pigs were screeching like maniacs and stumbling around due to infection from this virus. In the center of their pen was a huge tree. In this tree, vampire bats would feed on the fruit. The vampire bats had sticky saliva with the Nipha virus in it and when the fruit would fall to the ground, the pigs would eat it. Humans had never had this disease until this. So here we have a new virus going from Vampire bat to fruit to pig to human.

Also, I would think that these microbiologists would be discussing the health-risks of their profession considering the number of prominent ones that have gotten whacked in the past few years.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 11:47 AM
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Originally posted by LazarusTheLong
The more i read, the more I am deciding to go vegan...





Oh dear. You missed that part huh?

Mad Cows in the Garden






sofi: for clarification, the 33 states showing viral evidence is the influenza virus...not the bird flu... but it does show how fast this virus can spread, and how many people can die from a normal seasonal affliction.





Uh huh. But. Bird flu is influenza and nobody is saying what strain is spreading. ...Doesn't look like bird flu (not virulent enough). ...But all things considered, I'm not sure I'd rely on official reports for the truth.






and be careful... the canooks seem to be the first to be in danger...





WHAT?! ...I missed that. Can you explain?






any word on whether chickens can spread this by being eaten... (does cooking destroy the virus)?




It's in duck meat for sure - don't see why chickens or any other meat would be different. ...I'm going for well cooked everything these days.




.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 01:03 PM
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And whatever you do, DON'T DRINK THE RAW DUCK'S BLOOD!

What's odd, are the same recommendations my mother told me as a kid to avoid getting a cold, work just as well. Basic personal sanitation techniques developed centuries ago to cope with increased population densities work just fine today.

If there is deliberate design behind these diseases, those responsible would approve of killing off a large portion of people, believe in the sacredness of environment over humanity, be isolated, and live in relatively low population density areas. These diseases work best in big cities where there is lots of personal contact via touch. A culture that makes hygeine part of it's religion, and enforces interpersonal separation/isolation by clothing through drastic measures, would be least subsceptible to these diseases, would be able to survive without needing to resort to traceable things like antibiotics or antidotes to protect it's elite...this is the one that has the most to gain.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 09:01 PM
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Originally posted by Phugedaboudet

If there is deliberate design behind these diseases, .....These diseases work best in big cities where there is lots of personal contact via touch. A culture that makes hygeine part of it's religion, and enforces interpersonal separation/isolation by clothing through drastic measures, would be least subsceptible to these diseases, would be able to survive without needing to resort to traceable things like antibiotics or antidotes to protect it's elite...this is the one that has the most to gain.





Not sure what you're suggesting here, but "these diseases" almost certainly originated in the USA in the early 1900's - about when the first mass vaccinations occurred (WWI).

Fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD)

The new round of mutations started when FMD enetered the bird population via domestic turkeys in the USA.

From FMD in US Turkeys to Bird Flu in Asia


.



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 09:31 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
...leaks about it being in pigs (usaually the crossover species)


Whoa! I missed that!

Pigs are probably the closest mammals to humans from an immunological standpoint.

Their immune system works very much like ours and that is why it is a dangerous crossover species.

This is likely the reason that societies with millennia of direct contact and experience with nature regarded pigs as "filthy" animals and put diet restrictions in place that later became ingrained into religious dogma. (note: this was long before those pink-skinned domesticated varieties were raised in filthy pens – pigs, or more accurately wild boars, do not roll around in their own feces!)

Do you have any sources for these stories soficrow? or maybe remember where that species jump took place? That's a bit scary.

PS- ever read a book called "Men and Microbes - Disease and Plagues in History and Modern Times" by Arno Karlen? Probably of interest to you


edit: brain fart

[edit on 3/8/2005 by Gools]



posted on Mar, 8 2005 @ 09:59 PM
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Originally posted by Gools

Do you have any sources for these stories soficrow? or maybe remember where that species jump took place? That's a bit scary.

PS- ever read a book called "Men and Microbes - Disease and Plagues in History and Modern Times" by Arno Karlen? Probably of interest to you






Yes, but will have to be tomorrow. Almost ready to pack it in now. The bird jump link is posted above (turkeys) - next hit is FMD in "japonica" quail in Japan, 1996 - Brazil identified the pathology (fibrodysplasia) in chickens 2000(?) in a 'benign' reovirus.

...The H5N1 links are mainly pathological (including fibroplasia/fibrosis, hyperplasia), with histochemistry (including myofibroblasts, a-smooth muscle actin).

FYI - the pig jump is largely irrelevant with H5N1 - that's why it's so scary - jumps directly between species (birds, humans, cats). Hmmm. Much like prions. Quelle surprise.


That's it for now, sorry.

(No, haven't read that book - thanks - will look for it.)


.


[edit on 8-3-2005 by soficrow]



posted on Mar, 9 2005 @ 03:56 PM
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UPDATE


Vietnam: Two new bird flu cases without symptoms

"Vietnamese health officials said Wednesday the 61-year-old widow of a bird flu victim has also tested positive for the H5N1 virus, but showed no symptoms.

Earlier in the day, officials reported that an 80-year-old man - who had two infected grandchildren - also had the virus but did not fall ill.

The two cases raised concerns that avian influenza may be more widespread than originally believed.

"It's quite possible that some people are falling sick and their symptoms are very light and they don't end up in hospital," WHO regional spokesman Peter Cordingley said earlier this week."


www.thanhniennews.com...
thestar.com.my.../2005/3/9/latest/21904Vietnamre&sec=latest
feeds.bignewsnetwork.com...



posted on Mar, 9 2005 @ 05:39 PM
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Well with a death rate of as high as 70% it's a bit surprising to have a 61 year old and and 80 year old who are asymptomatic.

Raises questions of susceptibility to H5N1 in my opinion. Do we know what that number is?

If the susceptibility number is not very high then we have a potentially large reservoir for transmission which is bad news for the susceptible population or do we have a potential "typhoid Mary" kind of situation with high susceptability?
.





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