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Human Swine Influenza Outbreak Investigation - Symptoms

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Guest FEMA

H1N1 Flu Outbreak - FEMA Response

Leadership is monitoring the current situation and participating in conferences and planning sessions to anticipate and respond to the anticipated needs of State and local agencies. DHS Office of Health Affairs is engaged in providing DHS personnel with protective measures. FEMA NRCC is maintaining contact with FEMA Regions, DHS, HHS/CDC, and other Federal and state partners. Select Regions are standing by or have activated personnel in response to the Department of Health and Human Services nationwide Public Health Emergency Declaration:

 

 

•Region I RRCC is coordinating with the New England States, HHS/CDC and Federal and State partners to determine potential requirements. All States in the Region have a heightened awareness and are fully engaged in preparations should the outbreak enter New England. New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont EOCs are activated at Level II. Partial activation.

 

•Region II RRCC increased their Watch staff and remains at a heighted watch status. A Region II LNO is deployed to the NYC OEM.

 

•Region IV is currently at Level III (Partial Activation) in response to the Public Health Emergency.

 

•Region V is coordinating with the activated EOCs of Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio to monitor and assist with the H1N1 response. Anti-virals and PPE has been deployed to Indiana and Ohio. Ohio currently has 1 confirmed case of H1N1 flu and Indiana has 1 probable case.

 

•Region IX is working with state and county EOCs in response to the H1N1 Flu outbreak. Governor of California declared a State of Emergency on April 28 to strengthen response capabilities and limit the spread of the outbreak.

 

•Region X RRCC Regional Support Team (RST) and Emergency Support Functions (ESF) are on standby.

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Guest LAW_*

Thanks. Here is the confirmation:

 

State Health Commissioner Karen Remley, M.D., MBA, said today that the state has received confirmation of its first two H1N1 flu cases, also called swine flu.

 

The patients are an adult male from eastern Virginia and an adult female from central Virginia. Each had traveled to Mexico, both had mild illnesses and are recovering well, and neither required hospitalization. Neither are students.

 

Given the size of the state’s population, seasonal travel patterns and the ease with which the flu virus is spread, Dr. Remley said that it is likely there will be additional cases in the Commonwealth.

 

“Our local health districts are working in close collaboration with their community partners in monitoring developments and providing guidance,” Dr. Remley said. “We remain in contact with clinicians, hospitals, and pharmacists to furnish them with up-to-the-minute care and treatment guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

 

The current H1N1 influenza outbreak is caused by an influenza A virus not previously detected in humans or animals. Symptoms are similar to those of seasonal flu and typically include fever, cough and sore throat. Additional symptoms may include headache, chills and fatigue. Persons with H1N1 flu are contagious for up to seven days after the onset of illness and possibly longer if they are still symptomatic.

 

“We have established an information line at (877) ASK-VDH3, or (877) 275-8343, for anyone with concerns or questions about H1N1 flu,” said Dr. Remley. The hotline, which will be open May 1 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., assisted 750 callers today.

 

http://www.vdh.state.va.us/news/PressRelea...009SwineFlu.htm

 

 

 

 

This sucker is spreading like Wild Fire.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://www.nbc29.com/Global/story.asp?S=10...nav=menu496_2_3

 

 

2 Swine Flu Cases in Virginia

 

Posted: April 30, 2009 07:09 PM EDT

 

Updated: April 30, 2009 07:56 PM EDT

 

The Virginia Department of Health has announced two cases of swine flu in Virginia. State Health Commissioner Karen Remley says the patients are an adult male from eastern Virginia and an adult female from Central Virginia.

 

Both had traveled to Mexico, both had mild illnesses and are recovering well. Neither required hospitalization. Neither are students.

 

Given the state's population, seasonal travel patterns and theease with which the flu virus is spread, Remley said there will likely be more cases.

 

She encouraged anyone experiencing fever, cough and sore throat to stay home from work or school and call their doctor.

 

Read the full press release from the VDH here.

 

There have been just over 100 cases in the United States. A child from Mexico visiting Texas did die after contracting swine flu.

 

Mexico's health secretary said earlier today there were 260 confirmed swine flu cases there, including 12 deaths. But he says the number of new cases is stabilizing and he'll stop updating the count of suspected cases and deaths, which had stood at about 2,500 and 168, respectively.

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Guest Guest

Richard E. Besser, MD

Acting Director

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

1600 Clifton Rd, MS D-14

Atlanta, GA 30333

 

On April 26,2009, pursuant to section 564(B)(l)© of the Act (21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3(B)(l)©), the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) determined that a public health emergency exists involving Swine Influenza A that affects or has significant potential to affect national security. Pursuant to section 564(B) of the Act (21 U.S.C. 3 360bbb-3(B)), and on the basis of such determination, the Secretary of DHHS then declared an emergency justifying the authorization of the emergency use of certain zanamivir products subject to the terms of any authorization issued under section 564(a) of the Act (21 U.S.C. 3 360bbb-3(a)).

 

Having concluded that the criteria for issuance of this authorization under section 564© of the Act (21 U.S.C. 8 360bbb-3(B)) are met, I am authorizing the emergency use of certain zanamivir products' for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza, subject to the terms of this authorization.

 

( I ) Swine Influenza A can cause influenza, a serious or life-threatening disease or condition;

 

( 2 ) based on the totality of scientific evidence available to FDA, it is reasonable to believe that certain zanamivir products may be effective for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza, and that the known and potential benefits of certain zanamivir products, when used for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza, outweigh the known and potential risks of such products; and

 

( 3 ) there is no adequate, approved, and available alternative to the emergency use of certain zanamivir products for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza.

Therefore, I have concluded that the emergency use of certain zanamivir products for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza meets the above statutory criteria for issuance of an authorization.

 

Scope of Authorization

 

I have concluded, pursuant to section 564(d)(1) of the Act, that the scope of this authorization is limited to the use of authorized zanamivir products for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza for individuals exposed to Swine Influenza A. The emergency use of authorized zanamivir products under this EUA must be consistent with, and may not exceed, the terms of this letter, including the scope and the conditions of authorization set forth below.

 

The authorized zanamivir products are as follows: Relenza (zanamivir) Inhalation PowderRelenza (zanamivir) Inhalation Powder

 

Zanamivir products are approved and indicated for the treatment of uncomplicated acute illness due to influenza A and B virus in adults and pediatric patients 7 years of age and older who have been symptomatic for no more than 2 days. Zanamivir products are also approved and indicated for prophylaxis of influenza in adults and pediatric patients 5 years of age and 01der.~

 

1. The above zanamivir products are authorized for use at later time points (i.e., patients who are symptomatic for more than 2 days) andor in patients sick enough to require hospitalization (i.e., patients who do not have "uncomplicated acute illness" per se).

 

2. The above zanamivir products labeled consistent with the manufacturer's label are authorized to be distributed under this EUA. Such products are authorized to be distributed or dispensed without the requisite prescription label information under section 503(B)(2) of the Act (e-g., name and address of dispenser, serial number, date of prescription or of its filling, name of prescriber, name of patient, if stated on prescription, directions for use and cautionary statements, if contained in the prescription).

 

have concluded, pursuant to section 564( d )( 2 ) of the Act, that it is reasonable to believe that the known and potential benefits of authorized zanamivir products, when used for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza, outweigh the known and potential risks of such products.

 

1 have concluded, pu&uant to section 564( d )( 3 ) of the Act, based on the totality of scientific evidence available to FDA, that it is reasonable to believe that the authorized zanamivir products may be effective for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza pursuant to section 564( c )( 2 )( A ) of the Act. FDA has reviewed the scientific information available, including the information supporting the conclusions described in Section I above, and concludes that the authorized zanamivir products, when used for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza in the specified population, meet the criteria set forth in section 564© of the Act concerning safety and potential effectiveness.

 

Subject to the tenns of this EUA and under the circumstances set forth in the Secretary of DHHS's determination under section 564(B)(l)© described above and the Secretary of DHHS's corresponding declaration under section 564(B)(1), the zanamivir products described above are authorized for the treatment and prophylaxis of influenza for individuals exposed to Swine Influenza A.

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Guest LAW_*

U.S. Human Cases of H1N1 Flu Infection

(As of May 5, 2009, 11:00 AM ET)

 

Alabama 4

Arizona 17

California 49

Colorado 6

Connecticut 2

Delaware 20

Florida 5

Georgia 1

Idaho 1

Illinois 82

Indiana 3

Iowa 1

Kansas 2

Kentucky* 1

Louisiana 7

Maine 1

Maryland 4

Massachusetts 6

Michigan 2

Minnesota 1

Missouri 1

Nebraska 1

Nevada 1

New Hampshire 1

New Jersey 6

New Mexico 1

New York 90

North Carolina 1

Ohio 3

Oregon 15

Pennsylvania 1

Rhode Island 1

South Carolina 16

Tennessee 2

Texas 41 1 Death

Utah 1

Virginia 3

Wisconsin 3

 

TOTAL (38) 403 cases 1 death

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Guest CDC

CDC has completed deployment of 25 percent of the supplies in the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) to all states in the continental United States. These supplies and medicines will help states and U.S. territories respond to the outbreak. In addition, the Federal Government and manufacturers have begun the process of developing a vaccine against the novel H1N1 flu virus.

 

Response actions are aggressive, but they may vary across states and communities depending on local circumstances. Communities, businesses, places of worship, schools and individuals can all take action to slow the spread of this outbreak.

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Guest LAW_*

Influenza is a virus that spreads very easily and people can spread the virus through the day before they're actually showing symptoms.

 

The issue of school closing has gotten a lot of attention. There's a balance between the importance of making sure our children go to school every day and absorb the knowledge they need and safety and security of those children. And the strategies of some of the public health departments across the country were when there was a known easy transmission child to child, we saw the outbreak run through the New York school system and didn't know enough about what the virus was likely to do to take children out of school, shut those schools down when they were affected.

 

We know that many people acquired this infection traveling to Mexico during Spring break.

 

The virus transmits very quickly child to child, the end result has been a more mild version of the disease than was originally feared and the lethality seems at a much less significant level. So there's new guidance being put out as we speak that will recommend that schools cease closing with affected cases.

 

We don't know what will happen over the course of the summer and we certainly are don't know what will happen when we get back into flu season. This is may. Flu season is later this fall. So our aggressive efforts to learn more, to study more, certainly to ramp up vaccine productions are going to be under way.

 

We are going to be paying much attention to what takes place in the southern hemisphere. They're entering their flu season. That will be very important as we think about what we want to do in in this country in terms of vaccination. That information will be important in terms of looking at whether any resistance develops in the virus and whether the virus changes overtime into something that would be more severe.

 

There are lots of people who have mistakenly believed there is a vaccine available right now. There's some confusion between a viral discussion with Tamiflu and Relenza and a vaccine. So I wanted to particularly clarify there is not a vaccine.

 

You can't begin to develop a vaccine until you know what the virus strain looks like. So the strain has been identified that's been grown right now. There will be testing phases under way to get to the right dosage and to make sure that we are administering this in the safest possible fashion and to be ready should the decision be made to go into production phase.

 

The median age for contracting the virus is 16 years. The range of people contracting the virus is 3 months to 81 years. There have been 35 known hospitalizations or confirmed hospitalizations with one death. 62% of the United States cases,s confirmed cases are under 18 years of age. World health organization earlier today was reporting 1,124 cases in 21 countries.

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Guest LAW_*

U.S. Human Cases of H1N1 Flu Infection

(As of May 11, 2009, 12:41 PM ET) States* Laboratory

 

Alabama 4

Arizona 182

California 191

Colorado 39

Connecticut 24

Delaware 44

Florida 54

Georgia 3

Hawaii 6

Idaho 1

Illinois 487

Indiana 39

Iowa 43

Kansas 18

Kentucky** 10

Louisiana 9

Maine 4

Maryland 23

Massachusetts 88

Michigan 130

Minnesota 7

Missouri 14

Nebraska 13

Nevada 9

New Hampshire 4

New Jersey 7

New Mexico 30

New York 190

North Carolina 11

Ohio 6

Oklahoma 14

Oregon 17

Pennsylvania 10

Rhode Island 7

South Carolina 32

South Dakota 1

Tennessee 54

Texas 179 2 Deaths

Utah 63

Vermont 1

Virginia 16

Washington 128 1

Washington, D.C. 4

Wisconsin 384

TOTAL*(44) 2600 cases 3 deaths

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Guest LAW_*

Antiviral Resistance

 

This novel (H1N1) influenza virus is sensitive (susceptible) to the neuraminidase inhibitor antiviral medications, zanamivir and oseltamivir. It is resistant to the adamantane antiviral medications, amantadine and rimantadine.

 

Antiviral Treatment for Novel (H1N1) Influenza

 

For antiviral treatment of novel influenza (H1N1) virus infection, either oseltamivir or zanamivir are recommended Table 1. Recommendations for use of antivirals may change as data on antiviral effectiveness, clinical spectrum of illness, adverse events from antiviral use, and antiviral susceptibility data become available.

 

Clinical judgment is an important factor in treatment decisions. Persons with suspected novel H1N1 influenza who present with an uncomplicated febrile illness typically do not require treatment unless they are at higher risk for influenza complications, and in areas with limited antiviral mediation availability, local public health authorities might provide additional guidance about prioritizing treatment within groups at higher risk for infection.

 

Treatment is recommended for:

 

All hospitalized patients with confirmed, probable or suspected novel influenza (H1N1).

Patients who are at higher risk for seasonal influenza complications (see above).

If a patient is not in a high-risk group or is not hospitalized, healthcare providers should use clinical judgment to guide treatment decisions, and when evaluating children should be aware that the risk for severe complications from seasonal influenza among children younger than 5 years old is highest among children younger than 2 years old. Many patients who have had novel influenza (H1N1) virus infection, but who are not in a high-risk group have had a self-limited respiratory illness similar to typical seasonal influenza. For most of these patients, the benefits of using antivirals may be modest. Therefore, testing, treatment and chemoprophylaxis efforts should be directed primarily at persons who are hospitalized or at higher risk for influenza complications.

 

Once the decision to administer antiviral treatment is made, treatment with zanamivir or oseltamivir should be initiated as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms. Evidence for benefits from antiviral treatment in studies of seasonal influenza is strongest when treatment is started within 48 hours of illness onset. However, some studies of oseltamivir treatment of hospitalized patients with seasonal influenza have indicated benefit, including reductions in mortality or duration of hospitalization even for patients whose treatment was started more than 48 hours after illness onset. Recommended duration of treatment is five days. Antiviral doses recommended for treatment of novel H1N1 influenza virus infection in adults or children 1 year of age or older are the same as those recommended for seasonal influenza (Table 1). Oseltamivir use for children <1 year old was recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), and dosing for these children is age-based (Table 2) (See Emergency Use Authorization of Tamiflu (oseltamivir)).

 

Note: Areas that continue to have seasonal influenza activity, especially those with circulation of oseltamivir-resistant seasonal human influenza A (H1N1) viruses, might prefer to use either zanamivir or a combination of oseltamivir and rimantadine or amantadine to provide adequate empiric treatment or chemoprophylaxis for patients who might have seasonal human influenza A (H1N1) virus infection.

 

Antiviral Chemoprophylaxis for Novel (H1N1) Influenza

 

For antiviral chemoprophylaxis of novel (H1N1) influenza virus infection, either oseltamivir or zanamivir are recommended (Table 1). Duration of antiviral chemoprophylaxis post-exposure is 10 days after the last known exposure to novel (H1N1) influenza. The indication for post-exposure chemoprophylaxis is based upon close contact with a person who is a confirmed, probable or suspected case of novel influenza A (H1N1) virus infection during the infectious period of the case. The infectious period for persons infected with the novel influenza A (H1N1) virus is assumed to be similar to that observed in studies of seasonal influenza. With seasonal influenza, studies have shown that people may be able to transmit infection beginning one day before they develop symptoms to up to 7 days after they get sick. Children, especially younger children, might potentially be infectious for longer periods. However, for this guidance, the infectious period is defined as one day before until 7 days after the case’s onset of illness. If the contact occurred with a case whose illness started more than 7 days before contact with the person under consideration for antivirals, then chemoprophylaxis is not necessary. For pre-exposure chemoprophylaxis, antiviral medications should be given during the potential exposure period and continued for 10 days after the last known exposure to a person with novel (H1N1) influenza virus infection during the cases infectious period. Oseltamivir can also be used for chemoprophylaxis under the EUA for children less than 1 year of age (see Children Under 1 Year of Age).

 

Post exposure antiviral chemoprophylaxis with either oseltamivir or zanamivir can be considered for the following:

 

Close contacts of cases (confirmed, probable, or suspected) who are at high-risk for complications of influenza

Health care personnel, public health workers, or first responders who haves had a recognized, unprotected close contact exposure to a person with novel (H1N1) influenza virus infection (confirmed, probable, or suspected) during that person’s infectious period. Information on appropriate personal protective equipment is available at: Interim Guidance for Infection Control for Care of Patients with Confirmed or Suspected Swine Influenza A (H1N1) Virus Infection in a Healthcare Setting and might be updated frequently as additional information on transmission becomes available.

Pre-exposure antiviral chemoprophylaxis should only be used in limited circumstances, and in consultation with local medical or public health authorities. Certain persons at ongoing occupational risk for exposure who are also at higher risk for complications of influenza (e.g., health care personnel, public health workers, or first responders who are working in communities with influenza A H1N1 outbreaks) should carefully follow guidelines for appropriate personal protective equipment or consider temporary reassignment.

 

Antiviral Use for Control of Novel H1N1 Influenza Outbreaks

 

 

Use of antiviral drugs for treatment and chemoprophylaxis of influenza has been a cornerstone for the control of seasonal influenza outbreaks in nursing homes and other long term care facilities. At this time, no outbreaks of novel influenza A (H1N1) have been reported in such settings. However, if such outbreaks were to occur, it is recommended that ill patients be treated with oseltamivir or zanamivir and that chemoprophylaxis with either oseltamivir or zanamivir be started as early as possible to reduce the spread of the virus as is recommended for seasonal influenza outbreaks in such settings. Chemoprophylaxis should be administered to all non-ill residents and should continue for a minimum of 2 weeks. If surveillance indicates that new cases continue to occur, chemoprophylaxis should be continued until approximately 7 days after illness onset in the last patient. In addition to antiviral medications, other outbreak-control measures include appropriate infection control, establishing cohorts of patients with confirmed or suspected influenza, restricting staff movement between wards or buildings, and restricting contact between ill staff or visitors and patients, and active surveillance for new cases. Medical directors of long-term care facilities should review their plans for outbreak control of influenza. Additional guidance for infection control measures in long-term care facilities can be found at: Using Antiviral Medications to Control Influenza Outbreaks in Institutions .

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Guest WHO

11 May 2009 -- As of 06:00 GMT, 11 May 2009, 30 countries have officially reported 4694 cases of influenza A(H1N1) infection.

 

Mexico has reported 1626 laboratory confirmed human cases of infection, including 48 deaths. The United States has reported 2532 laboratory confirmed human cases, including three deaths. Canada has reported 284 laboratory confirmed human cases, including one death. Costa Rica has reported eight laboratory confirmed human cases, including one death.

 

The following countries have reported laboratory confirmed cases with no deaths - Argentina (1), Australia (1), Austria (1), Brazil (8), China (2, comprising 1 in China, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, and 1 in mainland China), Colombia (3), Denmark (1), El Salvador (4), France (13), Germany (11), Guatemala (1), Ireland (1), Israel (7), Italy (9), Japan (4), Netherlands (3), New Zealand (7), Norway (2), Panama (15), Poland (1), Portugal (1), Republic of Korea (3), Spain (95), Sweden (2), Switzerland (1) and the United Kingdom (47).

 

WHO is not recommending travel restrictions related to the outbreak of the influenza A(H1N1) virus.

 

Individuals who are ill should delay travel plans and returning travelers who fall ill should seek appropriate medical care. These recommendations are prudent measures which can limit the spread of many communicable diseases, including influenza.

 

post-2502-1242101084_thumbjpg

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Guest WHO

Subsequent waves of spread

 

The overall severity of a pandemic is further influenced by the tendency of pandemics to encircle the globe in at least two, sometimes three, waves. For many reasons, the severity of subsequent waves can differ dramatically in some or even most countries.

 

A distinctive feature of influenza viruses is that mutations occur frequently and unpredictably in the eight gene segments, and especially in the haemagglutinin gene. The emergence of an inherently more virulent virus during the course of a pandemic can never be ruled out.

 

Different patterns of spread can also influence the severity of subsequent waves. For example, if schoolchildren are mainly affected in the first wave, the elderly can bear the brunt of illness during the second wave, with higher mortality seen because of the greater vulnerability of elderly people.

 

During the previous century, the 1918 pandemic began mild and returned, within six months, in a much more lethal form. The pandemic that began in 1957 started mild, and returned in a somewhat more severe form, though significantly less devastating than seen in 1918. The 1968 pandemic began relatively mild, with sporadic cases prior to the first wave, and remained mild in its second wave in most, but not all, countries.

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Guest WHO

Assessment of the current situation

 

To date, the following observations can be made, specifically about the H1N1 virus, and more generally about the vulnerability of the world population. Observations specific to H1N1 are preliminary, based on limited data in only a few countries.

 

The H1N1 virus strain causing the current outbreaks is a new virus that has not been seen previously in either humans or animals. Although firm conclusions cannot be reached at present, scientists anticipate that pre-existing immunity to the virus will be low or non-existent, or largely confined to older population groups.

 

H1N1 appears to be more contagious than seasonal influenza. The secondary attack rate of seasonal influenza ranges from 5% to 15%. Current estimates of the secondary attack rate of H1N1 range from 22% to 33%.

 

With the exception of the outbreak in Mexico, which is still not fully understood, the H1N1 virus tends to cause very mild illness in otherwise healthy people. Outside Mexico, nearly all cases of illness, and all deaths, have been detected in people with underlying chronic conditions.

 

In the two largest and best documented outbreaks to date, in Mexico and the United States of America, a younger age group has been affected than seen during seasonal epidemics of influenza. Though cases have been confirmed in all age groups, from infants to the elderly, the youth of patients with severe or lethal infections is a striking feature of these early outbreaks.

 

In terms of population vulnerability, the tendency of the H1N1 virus to cause more severe and lethal infections in people with underlying conditions is of particular concern.

 

For several reasons, the prevalence of chronic diseases has risen dramatically since 1968, when the last pandemic of the previous century occurred. The geographical distribution of these diseases, once considered the close companions of affluent societies, has likewise shifted dramatically. Today, WHO estimates that 85% of the burden of chronic diseases is now concentrated in low- and middle-income countries. In these countries, chronic diseases show an earlier average age of onset than seen in more affluent parts of the world.

 

In these early days of the outbreaks, some scientists speculate that the full clinical spectrum of disease caused by H1N1 will not become apparent until the virus is more widespread. This, too, could alter the current disease picture, which is overwhelmingly mild outside Mexico.

 

Apart from the intrinsic mutability of influenza viruses, other factors could alter the severity of current disease patterns, though in completely unknowable ways, if the virus continues to spread.

 

Scientists are concerned about possible changes that could take place as the virus spreads to the southern hemisphere and encounters currently circulating human viruses as the normal influenza season in that hemisphere begins.

 

The fact that the H5N1 avian influenza virus is firmly established in poultry in some parts of the world is another cause for concern. No one can predict how the H5N1 virus will behave under the pressure of a pandemic. At present, H5N1 is an animal virus that does not spread easily to humans and only very rarely transmits directly from one person to another.

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Guest Darren

If you get an e-mail from the Department of Environmental Health about swine flu, advising you not to eat canned pork, ignore it...

 

It's spam!

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Guest POSITIVE_VIBRATIONS

:angry: :angry: :angry:

Me? Get sick? Oh no, not me! When pigs fly, I'll get sick!

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Actually, a positive attitude has been proven to improve the human immunity system. The immune system is enhanced by sleep and rest, and is impaired by stress. Hormones can also act as immunomodulators, altering the sensitivity of the immune system. For example, female sex hormones are known immunostimulators of both adaptive and innate immune responses. Some autoimmune diseases such as lupus erythematosus strike women preferentially, and their onset often coincides with puberty. By contrast, male sex hormones such as testosterone seem to be immunosuppressive. Other hormones appear to regulate the immune system as well, most notably prolactin, growth hormone and vitamin D. It is conjectured that a progressive decline in hormone levels with age is partially responsible for weakened immune responses in aging individuals. Conversely, some hormones are regulated by the immune system, notably thyroid hormone activity.

Diet may affect the immune system; for example, fresh fruits, vegetables, and foods rich in certain fatty acids may foster a healthy immune system. Likewise, fetal undernourishment can cause a lifelong impairment of the immune system. In traditional medicine, some herbs are believed to stimulate the immune system, such as echinacea, licorice, ginseng, astragalus, sage, garlic, elderberry, shiitake and lingzhi mushrooms, and hyssop, as well as honey. Studies have suggested that such herbs can indeed stimulate the immune system, although their mode of action is complex and difficult to characterize.

:rolleyes: :) :)

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Guest Wiki477

The H1N1 swine flu virus has now spread to 66 different countries throughout the globe, with at least 19,273 confirmed cases and 117 deaths having been reported according to the latest World Health Organisation (WHO) tally. A majority of the cases were reported by the United States, which now has at least 10,053 confirmed infections from the disease.

 

Egypt, Bulgaria, and Nicaragua each reported their first case, while Lebanon reported three.

 

The WHO's pandemic alert level is at the fifth level, on a scale of one to six. In order for a transition for the highest level to be made, the organisation must confirm a significant spread of swine flu in at least two continents. The WHO has recently been under pressure to include the severity of a disease spread to its criteria, not just the geographical spread of a virus. The WHO said that its committee had agreed that a statement on the strength of a epidemic should be made in any future pandemic declarations.

 

"There was a broad consensus on the importance of including information on severity in future announcements," the WHO said in a statement.

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Guest David

You could be one of the 35,000 US flu fatalities this season if you don't get vaccinated.

 

hose 35,000 US "flu deaths" each year is a fake number. The death rate is closer to 750and that's according to the CDC. (Besides, there's no telling how many of those deaths were caused by the vaccine because adverse reactions occur in half the people who get the shots.)

 

And the flu vaccine has contained mercury (used as a preservative) which increases the incidence of autism, Alzheimer's, ADHD, and other cognitive problems.

How "flu shot roulette" works:

 

The idea behind flu vaccines is prevention. Introducing a weakened virus into the body triggers a killing reaction by the immune system. Antibodies are created to destroy it if ever appears again.

 

The problem with flu shots is that researchers have to guess which virus is going to show up laterand they're almost always wrong.

 

A much more reliable approach is to strengthen the entire immune system so it can crush whatever virus strain happens to show up.

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Guest HSPH

Approximately six in ten Americans (59%) believe it is very or somewhat likely that there will be widespread cases of Influenza A (H1N1) with people getting very sick this coming fall or winter. Parents are more likely than people without children to believe this will occur, with roughly two thirds of parents (65%) saying it is very or somewhat likely compared to 56% of people without children.

 

"These results suggest Americans are likely to support public health officials in prioritizing preparations for the possibility of a serious H1N1 outbreak in the fall or winter," said Robert J. Blendon, Professor of Health Policy and Political Analysis at the Harvard School of Public Health.

 

Public Concern About Risk of Getting Ill Personally

 

Despite a majority believing that a serious outbreak is likely, more than half of Americans (61%) are not concerned about their personal risk-that is, that they or their family members will get sick from influenza A (H1N1) in the next year. This level is unchanged since the previous poll conducted May 5-6, 2009. The current survey further suggests that the World Health Organization (WHO)'s decision to raise the worldwide pandemic alert level to Phase 6 did not dramatically impact Americans' level of concern about their personal risk. Only 22% of Americans knew that the WHO had raised the level, and only 8% of Americans said it made them more concerned that they or their family would get Influenza A (H1N1) in the next 12 months.

 

Problems for Parents

 

One approach that has been used in the recent outbreak as a means to slow the spread of Influenza A (H1N1) is the closing of schools. In this survey, substantial numbers of parents who have children in school or daycare report that two-week closings in the fall would present serious financial problems for them. About half (51%) of these parents report that if schools/daycares closed for two weeks, they or someone else in their household would likely have to miss work in order to care for the children. Forty-three percent of these parents report that they or someone in their household would likely lose pay or income and have money problems; 26% of these parents report that they or someone in their household would likely lose their job or business as a result of having to stay home in order to care for the children.

 

 

The situation is likely to be worse for minority parents. More African American and Hispanic parents of children in school/daycare indicate that they are likely to lose pay or income and have money problems (56% and 64% respectively), as compared to whites (34%). And, more African American and Hispanic parents of children in school/daycare report that they or someone in their household would likely lose their job or business (40% and 49% respectively), as compared to whites (14%).

 

 

Problems Overall

 

If the outbreak in the fall or winter is serious and leads to large-scale workforce absenteeism, the survey suggests the possibility of substantial difficulties for many people and the economy as a whole. If people had to stay home for 7-10 days because they were sick or because they had to care for a family member who was sick, 44% indicate that they would be likely to lose pay or income and have money problems, and 25% reported that they would be likely to lose their job or business.

 

 

"The findings highlight the important role that employers would play during a future outbreak. Flexibility in their employee policies may help minimize some of the problems identified in this survey," said Blendon.

 

Recent Experience with H1N1

 

At the time of this survey, 27% of Americans reported that there had been cases of influenza A (H1N1) among people in their community, and 18% reported that schools in their community had closed due to influenza A (H1N1). Since the beginning of the outbreak, roughly two-thirds of people report that they or someone in their household has washed their hands or used sanitizer more frequently (62%).

 

"Handwashing was a major focus of public health education during the recent outbreak. The results of this survey show that these efforts helped people protect themselves," said Blendon.

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Guest Human

http://www.reuters.com/article/americasCrisis/idUSN17386637

 

Costa Rican leader Arias recovers from swine flu

 

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica, Aug 17 (Reuters) - Costa Rican President Oscar Arias has recovered from a bout of H1N1 swine flu and will return to his normal routine on Tuesday, his office said on Monday.

 

"He's not coming to work today but will come tomorrow," Manuel Morales, a spokesman for the Costa Rican presidency, said.

 

Arias, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1987, has been working from his home since contracting a mild case of the swine flu more than a week ago.

 

The Costa Rican president, 68, was the first head of state known to be infected with the H1N1 virus, which has spread around the world since April and could eventually affect 2 billion people, according to global health authorities.

 

Arias had been considered a higher-risk case because he also suffers from asthma. While most cases of H1N1 worldwide have not been serious, people with other illnesses may be more likely to suffer severe effects from the virus.

 

Last month, Arias brokered talks to try to resolve the political crisis in Honduras, where a de facto government unrecognized by most of the world has been holding power since the army ousted President Manuel Zelaya in a June 28 coup.

 

Negotiations broke down three weeks ago over whether the interim leadership would let Zelaya return to power.

 

(Editing by Will Dunham)

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Guest Human

Washington D.C. being an international town; It would be a wise idea to get it.

Two to three weeks ago a group of kids visiting D.C. all had H1N1. The kids had plenty of time to roam dc before anyone realized that they had H1N1.

 

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I am wondering if I should get the seasonal flu shot and the H1N1 shot as well.

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Guest CDC

Although the severity of flu outbreaks during the fall and winter of 2009-10 is unpredictable, more communities may be affected than were affected in spring/summer 2009, reflecting wider transmission and possibly greater impact. CDC is working with state and local health departments to continually monitor the spread of flu, the severity of the illness it is causing, and changes to the virus. If this information indicates that flu is causing more severe disease than during the spring/summer 2009 H1N1 outbreak, or if other developments require more aggressive mitigation measures, CDC may recommend additional strategies. Since severity may vary from community to community, IHEs should also look to their state and local health officials for information and guidance specific to their location.

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Guest Pogo

There will almost certainly not be enough vaccine for all who want it, and there may be a serious shortage. Less than half of the total supply of swine flu vaccine for the U.S. population (perhaps only 20 or 30 percent of the total supply) is being manufactured in this country; the federal government depends on foreign sources for the rest. By now the extreme dependence of the U.S. on imported vaccine should have been announced and explained by the government. Instead the estimated percentages just cited came from two non‑government experts – one writing in the Washington Post 1 and one quoted by the Associated Press. 2 Both express concern that foreign governments may block export of vaccine if the pandemic worsens and vaccine is needed for their own populations.

 

Through a directive to her senior staff, Secretary Sebelius could ensure the online posting of detailed information on the availability of vaccine in this country – with and without foreign sources of vaccine included. In addition, the repeated decisions by DHHS officials to rely heavily on foreign sources of vaccine for use in a pandemic should be explained

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Guest cover your mouth

Flu viruses are spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing by people with influenza.

 

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flumap082209.jpg

 

 

Follow updates from CDC on Twitter:

 

For more information about CDC's use of Micro-Blogs, such as Twitter, visit CDC.gov/SocialMedia/Tools/MicroBlogs.html

 

 

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Guest Lion

Approximately 50 Emory University students who have fallen ill with swine flu have voluntarily moved into a single dorm where they can recover without infecting other students. (Sept. 2)

 

 

The White House says half the American population will get swine flu.

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