Swine Flu has just spread through the high school I attended in NY where 75 students fell sick, apparently infected by a few students who recently returned from Mexico.
The World Health Organization has just reported that these outbreaks of swine flu in Mexico and the United States have the potential to cause a worldwide pandemic.
These events reminded me of the near release of Ebola and Marhburg viruses in a suburban area of Virginia described in the book “The Hot Zone: A Terrifying True Story“.
It was shortly after reading that (nearly 7 years ago) when I began to subscribe to the ProMed-mail infectious disease notification system.
The International Society for Infectious Diseases having members from over 155 countries operate a program for Monitoring Emerging Diseases; ProMed-mail is an electronic outbreak reporting system that monitors infectious diseases globally.
ProMed-mail describes itself as:
The global electronic reporting system for outbreaks of emerging infectious diseases & toxins, open to all sources. ProMED-mail, the Program for Monitoring Emerging Diseases, is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases.
They have set up their Twitter account back in February but have not yet started using it for notifications.
Perhaps they need to raise some more money in order to bootstrap using Twitter as a notification mechanism for those who subscribe (which I already do!). Its a worthy organization and service, please consider donating.
Michael, great post
Swine flu has been a popular subject on Twitter as we have watched this unfold – social media in action on a Saturday
CDC Says Too Late To Contain U.S. Flu Outbreak: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Frid.. http://tinyurl.com/czv52f
Fact PIgs body is 1-2 degreeC above human 39.5C body temp so its easy for the virus to jump to people
CDC website http://www.cdc.gov/swineflu/investigation.htm?s_cid=tw_epr_59
Google trends shows more people searching for swine flu: http://tinyurl.com/create.php
Wold heath map
Email just went out to pandemic group about this. Note that with the years of pandemic planning and webcasts we are or should be ready for this small incident.
New York sends flu samples from school to CDC-CNN
Flu may or may not be the swine flu. While this flu may be novel, that is new, with few if anyone haiving immunity remember the flu is not deadly like ebola or Bird flu. The CFR (case fatality ratio) is low.
Thre is much you can do to protect yourself. “Be prepared not scared.”