FLUPOCALYPSE: This Blew Up Fast

April 26th, 2009 | researchmaterial

Reuters:

Tests have confirmed that eight New York City schoolchildren had a type A influenza virus, likely swine flu, city Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Frieden said on Saturday.

BBC:

A new flu virus suspected of killing at least 60 people in Mexico has the potential to become a pandemic, the World Health Organization’s chief says.

On the ground:

I work as a resident doctor in one of the biggest hospitals in Mexico City and sadly, the situation is far from ’under control’… two of my partners who worked in this hospital (interns) were killed by this new virus in less than six days even though they were vaccinated as all of us were. The official number of deaths is 20, nevertheless, the true number of victims are more than 200…


16 Responses to “FLUPOCALYPSE: This Blew Up Fast”

  1. …while everyone was looking at birds…

  2. Additionally, the WHO has us currently at Level 3: “a new influenza virus subtype is causing disease in humans, but is not yet spreading efficiently and sustainably among humans.”

    http://www.who.int/csr/disease/avian_influenza/phase/en/index.html

  3. SANS has a list of resources regarding the issue for anyone involved in disaster recovery planning: http://www.sans.edu/resources/leadershiplab/pandemic_watch2009.php

    Will have to see how bad this gets. I for one am taking two weeks of vacation to see how this settles out.

  4. So why will I likely dream about “The Stand” and wonder if this is Chapter 1?

  5. Maybe I’m misunderstanding something about influenza etym/epidemiology, but at least one article I’ve read has claimed that the flu has strains of three different lines — pig, bird and something else. So why is the media just calling it a strain of swine flu?

    Either way yeah, came from nowhere and blew up quick. Two days ago nothing, now from Cuidad de Mexico to New York. Weird.

  6. Awesome, I had “killed by swine flu” in my office How Will We All Die pool.

  7. [...] in public places. On the brighter side, all of this comotion makes for good background. Writer Warren Ellis blogs about the news and files it under [...]

  8. Queens is NYC’s way-diverse borough. Might have been kids visiting family south of the border during spring break.

    I’m glad to hear that they’re feeling better. This may be a fast-moving wide-spread but not killer flu. Fingers crossed.

    Wash your hands. Cover your mouth. Don’t lick faucets.

  9. It’s in NZ now, too.

  10. http://www.theage.com.au/world/new-zealand-investigates-possible-swine-flu-cases-20090426-aj7y.html

  11. The alleged case of a flight attendant arriving in the UK from Mexico with it that was all over the UK papers this morning (in that cheery ‘not overreacting at all’ way of the UK press) was apparently a false alarm.

  12. I would put money that this flu has been around at least since January. I’ve had bad flus in my life, but the one I had earlier this year really tried to *kill* me. It wasn’t the symptoms of flu — aches, fever — that were dramatic. It was the *respiratory effects*. I would be gasping for air like a fish out of water at night, unable to fill more than a small fraction of my lungs. Because I’m a stubborn SOB, I didn’t go to the ER for several days. Fever and aches mostly gone, so they chalked it up to extreme bronchitis and gave me an antibiotic (the in-ER steroids and therapy they gave me were ineffective). And because they thought it was a “normal” flu, no swabs for culturing. Seriously, if you contract this thing, don’t wait for treatment. It is lethal.

  13. I maintain that this flue strain is far too virulent and kills far to quickly for the strain to survive for long, but, since I live in San Antonio , Texas, I maintain this while curled up under my desk, sobbing gently.

    And I can see the media is quickly blowing this one story out of proportion, so, In the event of some sort of mass hysteria, may we meet again, on the right hand of the lord.

    Courage

  14. Thousands of churches canceled their masses yesterday, here in México, something that has not happened since the Cristero War in the 1920′s.
    They were broadcasting them on the radio, and if you really wanted to eat the body of christ nevertheless, I heard there was a 10 minute ceremony straight to business.

  15. This strain of influenza does appear to have a very short infection-to-handicap timetable, but the simple fact that it appears to be easily transmitted is the thing to worry about.

    If it is a serious enough bug to lay people out for days at a time, and require urgent medical care for those who are at risk for further complications, healthcare systems across the globe may be quickly flooded with patients.

    Now I’m glad I don’t over-sanitize, because my immune system is doing pretty good these days!

  16. Nico Granada made a great observation above. On the US side, preparedness since 9-11 and the anthrax reports seems to have become one more bold pretense to action with poor follow through. At analystblues.com there’s a great bluepaper on the subject.