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...Manitoba Health authorities announced Wednesday 27 new confirmed cases of the H1N1 virus in people between the ages of one month and 56 years. Of the new cases, three patients have been treated in hospital.
...Two women and 10 children have been admitted to hospitals in the city.
The two women are listed in critical condition and one of them, who was pregnant, has lost her baby.
An official from the World Health Organization (WHO) said today that health experts are closely monitoring novel H1N1 influenza infections in Canada's Inuit populations, following reports that the communities are seeing more than their share of severe cases.
Keiji Fukuda, MD, told reporters at a press briefing, "We can say now that we know a larger number than expected of young Inuit people developed serious illnesses and had to get hospitalized."
In Canada, there are reports of infections in Inuit communities with a disproportionate number of serious cases occurring, “which is of concern to us,” said Fukuda.
Currently, there are 26 people — 23 adults and three children — in intensive care units of Manitoba hospitals, using ventilators to aid their strained breathing from flu-related reasons.
It is expected many of them will be confirmed as cases of swine flu, or the H1N1 influenza A virus, Manitoba's chief medical officer of health, Dr. Joel Kettner, said at a press conference Monday afternoon.
Another 25 children are in hospitals with respiratory illnesses and are being tested for swine flu, according to health officials.
Typically, at this time of year, there are very few — if any — cases of severe flu, said Kettner.
...More than half of the 26 people in Manitoba's intensive care units are of aboriginal descent with an average age of 35, said Kettner.
swine flu ...ravages native communities in Manitoba and Nunavut.
"It has taken way too long to recognize how bad the situation is," said David Harper, chief of Garden Hill First Nation.
"Such a disease coming at an atypical time of year, in an atypical population, with an atypical severity - this is a big red flag," said Dr. Ethan Rubinstein, head of adult infectious diseases at the University of Manitoba who's been working steadily with flu patients hospitalized in Winnipeg.
Throughout the province, 26 people - more than half of them aboriginal - have been placed on ventilators due to the flu. That figure includes three children, two residents of Nunavut and at least six pregnant women.
GENEVA (Reuters) - The World Health Organization wants to avoid excessive panic in any declaration of a flu pandemic by making sure countries are well prepared to deal with the move, its top flu expert Keji Fukuda said Tuesday.
"One critical issue is we do not want people to 'over-panic' if they hear we are in a pandemic situation," Fukuda, who is acting assistant director-general, told a news conference.
Originally posted by CultureD
Awesome post- I started one, as well (!)
...the 1918 strain was found in a North American Native woman, sequenced, and (ostensibly) sent to CDC only.
Now we have a prominent prof at U of Winnipeg, saying that he fears this event will mimic 1918-
Does he knwo something we don't? Does he have the sequence of the "real" H1N1 going round and is aware of what's to com?
What are your thoughts?
He said no one knows whether the latest cluster of flu cases is the end of the first wave of illness, or the beginning of a second wave.
The 1918 pandemic started with a mild wave of flu in spring that fizzled out, resurfaced in the fall and hit hard in November, 1918, The flu circled the globe and killed anywhere from 20 to 50 million people -- more lives than the First World War claimed.
"The working hypothesis now is that this pandemic will follow the 1918 [pattern]," Dr. Rubinstein said after a lecture at the University of Winnipeg on Wednesday.
Originally posted by CultureD
The US Military is also threatened (and this is off-topic slightly, but it does apply to N.A. security).
Many bases have multiple reposts of infections:
the Iowa Jima is heading back to Norfolk, where no DOUBT the families of the sailors will be infected,
and Canada doesn't have the same ability to enforce military quarantine as the US.
But if the Us is in trouble from a security standpoint, any attempt at martial law, or border closing will be a joke at best.