Pandemics

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holley
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Pandemics

Post by holley » Mon Apr 07, 2008 10:04 pm

"The Great Influenza", by John Barry, is an exceptionally well researched and written history of the disease, the personalities ,science and medicine of the period..

In two years (1918-'19), between 25-100 million people died of the Spanish Flu.... and this before the advent of air travel. It was an explosion.

The chaper on viruses (and pneumonia) is the most readable, educational, and terryfying portrait of the microbial world since the "Andromeda Strain" by Chriton.

Public health officials are holding their breath waiting for the coming pandemic, which is inevitable. Homeland Security has identified this contagion as the #1 threat to US security.

Title line edited by maestra @ Holley's request.
Last edited by holley on Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by pueppi » Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:21 am

Is this the same as that Bird Flu we were supossed to get last year or the year before?
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cry wolf

Post by holley » Tue Apr 08, 2008 8:51 am

It's the one public health officials are terrified will come every year.

H5N1 is bird flu.
Birds carry it in their intestines and can spread flu to humans but that's endemic. Pigs, cows, etc. each carry their own versions, whether we get it from them or they get it from us is unclear. Huge numbers of animal are slaughtered each year to forestall the mixing of human and animal viruses. Such mixing converts genetic drift into genetic shift, creating a new varrient for which the body has no defense. Widespread lethality results.

The greater the microbial gene pool, the denser the human population, the greater the certainty of a coming plague.
Last edited by holley on Fri Apr 11, 2008 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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how catch

Post by holley » Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:16 pm

Someone with the flu "sheds" the virus(can ìnfect others) usually from the third to the sixth day after he or she is infected....the virus can remain infectious on a hard surface for up to two days."

"When the virus floats in the air it can infect someone else for an hour to a day after it is exhaled." Suprisingly, the lower the humidity, the longer the virus survives. That is counter intuitive. Can someone explain this?
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Post by ccMarie » Sun Apr 13, 2008 8:28 pm

this is certainly not a topic that i am familiar with. i did some internet searching after reading your post, to try to educate myself somewhat. although i was aware, because of mass media, of some diseases (such as SARS and avian flu) potentially becoming pandemic problems... i also am a little prone to kind of shrug these things off as media hype (i almost never get sick).

i also did some searching at ted.com and found this talk

Larry Brilliant: TED Prize wish: Help stop the next pandemic
http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/view/id/58
Accepting his 2006 TED Prize, Dr. Larry Brilliant talks about how smallpox was finally eradicated from the planet. In a conversational style that belies the deadly seriousness of his subject, he describes the dangers of pandemic disease, and offers a solution in his dramatic TED Prize wish, a plan to use the Internet to help prevent the next pandemic.
of particular interest are some studies where this technology was used to identify areas of potential outbreak, and they were finding cases of SARS up to 6 months or more before WHO became alarmed.

and after hearing the talk, i looked up Global Public Health Intelligence Network (GPHIN)
http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/media/nr-rp/ ... pbk_e.html
as well as the group that was formed after Larry made his wish, InSTEDD (Innovative Support To Emergency Disease Disaster).
http://instedd.org/about


hopefully it will help you to know that there are some very caring and incredibly intelligent people out there working on these very concerning matters. i sometimes feel like i would never be able to contribute to the world in this way, massage is very important, but very different.
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early detction, early response

Post by holley » Mon Apr 14, 2008 12:05 am

What an inspiring podcast!! GPHIN , what a tool!
INSTEDD, a way is provided to mitigate disease. An electronic, rather then neural network, that promotes early detection, early response.
Thank-you, ccmarie, for bringing these to our attention, it is a gift.
Early detection, early response....my new mantra.

What makes the flu insideous is that :

" it's the flu, only the flu"

So no one takes it seriously exept those that know the potential lethality. We have been innured to it's dangers by the ongoing alarums (almost like crying wolf) so that we dismiss the warnings as "fear mongering" or some such.

Early detection, early response.
Hmmn. Wonder if we could monitor our own collective health on this forum by listing when we (or ?) get the flu (or?), the severity and our location? Plot findings on a map to see scope & spread?

Early detection, early response.
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April 17, 2008

Post by holley » Fri Apr 18, 2008 12:19 am

Article in LA Times today states that, on average, the flu kills 250,000-500,000 people a year worldwide.

And this is the garden variety type.

Asia, it is thought, is the cradle of this killer virus and a large number of monitoring stations have been established in response to the fear of a bird flu pandemic.

The monitoring will help deide which strain of the virus will go into a vaccine. About 300,000,000 million are vacinated each year.

Trouble is they get it right only 80% of the time and while the proliferation of monitors will, hopefully, increase this %'
history indicates those little varmints "will find a way".

Community preparedness is essential to deal with these buggers when they arrive. What is your individual, community, county, state action plan to deal with an epidemic? Give your county a call and let us know. I'll post next week what I find.
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Post by ccMarie » Mon Apr 21, 2008 5:06 pm

got a jump start. i was searching for what colorado may do in case of pandemic, and i found some pretty good (although somewhat basic) plans from university of colorado at boulder.

http://www.colorado.edu/safety/pandemicflu/prepare/

here is some of what they said:

Family Emergency Communication / Contact Plan


Create a list of all cell, work, and home numbers, and e-mail addresses of all family members.
Discuss a plan if a family member becomes ill and lives out of state.
Prepare for the possibility that airports and roads may be closed and think about a location to meet when travel is possible.
Each family member should have a medication list that is shared among members.

Plan for a pandemic

Store a two-week supply of water and food. During a pandemic, if you cannot get to a store, or if stores are out of supplies, it will be important for you to have extra supplies on hand. This can be useful in other types of emergencies, such as power outages and natural disasters.
Ask your doctor and insurance company if you can get an extra supply of your regular prescription drugs.
Keep cleaning supplies at home to adequately clean any potentially contaminated surfaces.
Volunteer with local groups to prepare and assist with emergency response.
Get involved in your community as it works to prepare for an influenza pandemic.

Limit the spread of germs and prevent infection

Teach your family and friends how to wash hands frequently with soap and water/gel hand sanitizer, and model correct behavior.
Teach your family and friends about fever control and taking their temperature.
Teach your family and friends to stay away from others as much as possible if they are sick.
Stay home from work and school if you or your family member is sick.
Prepare a quarantine room. If anyone in your family becomes stricken, they should be immediately moved to a location that is isolated from the rest of the house. This room should be as far away as possible and should be stocked with food and water, medical supplies, sanitation facilities, communication, cleaning tools, and entertainment (books, radio, TV, etc.).

Items to have on hand for an extended stay at home


Examples of food and non-perishables:

Dried fruit
Crackers
Canned juices
Bottled water
Canned or jarred baby food
Baby formula
Instant soup
Jell-O
Gatorade-type drinks
Pet food

Examples of medical, health, and emergency supplies:

Prescribed medical supplies such as glucose and blood pressure monitoring equipment
Soap and/or alcohol-based (60-95 percent) hand wash
Medicines for fever, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen
Thermometers
Anti-diarreal medication
Vitamins
Fluids with electrolytes such as Gatorade or Pedialyte
Cleansing agent/soap
Disinfectants such as Lysol or bleach
Flashlight
Batteries
eta:

i also did some searching, and the wall street journal has an avian flu tracker:
http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB ... t=h1n1+map

if you look in the note to reader in italics at the top, click the H5N1 map link, and a map opens, updated in FEB 2008. this map is the WHO tracking of avian flu. kind of interesting.
You are not on this planet to produce anything with your body. You are on this planet to produce something with your soul. Your body is simply and merely the tool of your soul.

- Neale Donald Walsh Conversations with God

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lolapalooza

Post by holley » Mon Apr 21, 2008 10:33 pm

Thanks for both the research and the posting; being prepared, early detection and early response in the home and community bode well for survival.

It is thought the huge number of fatalities (in the 1918-1919 outbreak) were due to lack of basic care (food/water sanitation) for those unable to care for themselves and mingling, rather then isolating, individuals during the infectious stage. You got that covered, your thoroughness
is a gift.

I am not in denial @ this coming plague but inertia in established patterns of behavior and magical thinking (it wouln't happen soon) hamper preparedness.

How can we, individually and collectively, overcome these impediments?
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Re: H1N1

Post by holley » Sat May 02, 2009 8:27 am

If we escape a pandemic at this time, there is always the next time. Interesting to note that the flu of 1918 innoculated those who caught it. They were relatively unaffected by the more lethal one of 1919-20.
Last edited by holley on Mon May 04, 2009 6:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: H1N1

Post by AngEngland » Sat May 02, 2009 12:21 pm

My husband's philosophy is "Wash your hands BEFORE you pick your nose and you should be OK" *snort*

But then we can get water from the well at the ranch, we have 80 head of cattle, a growing flock of chickens, milk goats now producing milk, and a garden that will soon produce enough fruits and veges to last through the winter. Regardless - we'd be OK. I have milks, eggs, meat and the only thing lacking would be Vit C which I should have n spades when these tomatoes plants begin to produce in another month. Since I have stocked up on canned and frozen fruits/veges enough for two months (when we hit Sam's Club we do it up right!!) I am all set.

And this was before the 'swine flu'. *laughing* This is just common sense country lving. I think the concentration of population shifting from rural/small town lving to larger populaces is a huge contributing factor. We lve "in town" and are 50' from our nearest neighbor's house. At the ranch we are 40 acres from the nearest house. Not very conducive to spreading infectious diseases.

Now, my husband is the one most likely to get something (or bring it home) because he works at Wal-Mart. Everyone and their dog comes to Wal-Mart! *laughing* I bought him a pocket hand sanitizer and he's been giving the cart pushers sanitary wipes to use on the shopping carts to help cut down on possibility of contamination. So far no reported cases in Oklahoma but with Texas, Kansas, and Arizona all reporting CONFIRMED cases I would expect it is only a matter of time.

Incidentally - just so you know - you have a greater chance of being struck by lightning. Or of your child being killed in a shopping cart accident. (the single greatest equpment cause of childhood injuries - more than high chairs, cribs, walkers, and safety gates COMBINED).

Angela <><
P.S. sorry for typos, the "I" key on my keyboard is sticky and won't work all the time. :-P

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Re: H1N1

Post by holley » Thu Jun 11, 2009 2:25 pm

Well, it's officially become a pandemic and we will see what happens when it comes round again during the flu season.  At some point, when genetic drift becomes genetic shift and hits the fan of a very large microbial pool, we will dance to the lightning.
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Re: H1N1

Post by pueppi » Thu Jun 11, 2009 5:14 pm

pandemic just means-
–adjective 1. (of a disease) prevalent throughout an entire country, continent, or the whole world; epidemic over a large area.

Yahoo News wrote:Thursday's announcement by the World Health Organization doesn't mean the virus is any more lethal — only that its spread is considered unstoppable.

<snip>

So far, swine flu has caused 144 deaths, compared with ordinary flu that kills up to 500,000 people a year.
I still think all the hooplah was a lot more political than anything else.
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Re: H1N1

Post by Monkey » Fri Jun 12, 2009 7:30 am

I agree the hooplah was a lot of political nonsense.

Watching the news this morning - the DR. they had on talking about the whole 'pandemic' thing said that h1n1 has actually decreased in severity since it first popped up in Mexico, rather than becoming more severe as feared. This isn't to say it won't mutate and become more severe, but right now it's a fairly mild flu, even more mild than your garden variety influenza.

That doesn't mean everyone shouldn't still be proactive with their hygiene and stay home if they're sick - but that should be standard protocol anyways, h1n1 or not. And those of us who work closely with people on a constant basis, should have this down pat already anyways.

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Re: H1N1

Post by holley » Mon Jun 15, 2009 9:12 am

Pueppi,

Wondering why you think the world wide response to H1N1 was mostly political hoopla? The info from the medical community indicated the response was necessary.
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Re: H1N1

Post by pueppi » Mon Jun 15, 2009 9:26 am

Gut instinct. However, I have no problem with anyone labeling it a pandemic. It is what it is. But, I do think there is a lot more to this han meets the eye --- the whole situation with Mexico was a bit "odd"... especially when I'm in Texas and we didn't see much travel on over into our neck of the woods, and you'd want to know that I am located where there is a big enough population of illegal immigrants that should have brought that puppy on over with them.

You can read my post and a few others here... http://www.bodyworkonline.com/forum/vie ... 0&p=137448
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Re: H1N1

Post by pueppi » Fri Oct 02, 2009 9:34 am

Well, I finally have at least one person I know who got the Swine Flu (I do believe it is the same as this thread about the H1N1... but, if I am wrong please correct me). The doc put her on TamaFlu and she was pretty "good to go" after 4 days.

As a side joke (because I love this picture and had to add it in)... :)

Image
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Re: H1N1

Post by ccMarie » Fri Oct 02, 2009 10:16 am

LOL...

That is not how you get the swine flu.

Thanks for the chortle.
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Re: H1N1

Post by holley » Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:51 am

22 million have had H1N1 and 4,000(oops) have died. A mere blip thus far but this virus mutates rapidly so we may not have seen the worst of it.
Last edited by holley on Sat Nov 14, 2009 4:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: H1N1

Post by JaeMarie » Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:59 am

holley wrote:22 million have had H1N1 and 40,000 have died. A mere blip thus far but this virus mutates rapidly so we may not have seen the worst of it.
Worldwide? Since it started or since the beginning of this season?

I'll look for some statistics, but yesterday I heard on the radio that in the United States they were estimating (if I remember correctly) in the area of 4000, potentially 6000ish deaths, and gave a breakdown of the number of sick, hospitalized, and deaths of the different age ranges during a specific time period.

*EDIT to add*

These were the numbers I heard yesterday - I found them from an online newspaper. The time period is April to October 17th, for the United States.

Children under 18: 8 million cases, 36,000 hospitalizations, 540 deaths.
Adults 18 to 64: 12 million cases, 53,000 hospitalizations, 2,900 deaths
Adults 65 and older: 2 million cases, 9,000 hospitalizations, 440 deaths.

http://www.buffalonews.com/home/story/859656.html

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Re:

Post by JasonE » Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:07 pm

ccMarie wrote:got a jump start. i was searching for what colorado may do in case of pandemic, and i found some pretty good (although somewhat basic) plans from university of colorado at boulder.

http://www.colorado.edu/safety/pandemicflu/prepare/

here is some of what they said:

Family Emergency Communication / Contact Plan


Create a list of all cell, work, and home numbers, and e-mail addresses of all family members.
Discuss a plan if a family member becomes ill and lives out of state.
Prepare for the possibility that airports and roads may be closed and think about a location to meet when travel is possible.
Each family member should have a medication list that is shared among members.

Plan for a pandemic

Store a two-week supply of water and food. During a pandemic, if you cannot get to a store, or if stores are out of supplies, it will be important for you to have extra supplies on hand. This can be useful in other types of emergencies, such as power outages and natural disasters.
Ask your doctor and insurance company if you can get an extra supply of your regular prescription drugs.
Keep cleaning supplies at home to adequately clean any potentially contaminated surfaces.
Volunteer with local groups to prepare and assist with emergency response.
Get involved in your community as it works to prepare for an influenza pandemic.

Limit the spread of germs and prevent infection

Teach your family and friends how to wash hands frequently with soap and water/gel hand sanitizer, and model correct behavior.
Teach your family and friends about fever control and taking their temperature.
Teach your family and friends to stay away from others as much as possible if they are sick.
Stay home from work and school if you or your family member is sick.
Prepare a quarantine room. If anyone in your family becomes stricken, they should be immediately moved to a location that is isolated from the rest of the house. This room should be as far away as possible and should be stocked with food and water, medical supplies, sanitation facilities, communication, cleaning tools, and entertainment (books, radio, TV, etc.).

Items to have on hand for an extended stay at home


Examples of food and non-perishables:

Dried fruit
Crackers
Canned juices
Bottled water
Canned or jarred baby food
Baby formula
Instant soup
Jell-O
Gatorade-type drinks
Pet food

Examples of medical, health, and emergency supplies:

Prescribed medical supplies such as glucose and blood pressure monitoring equipment
Soap and/or alcohol-based (60-95 percent) hand wash
Medicines for fever, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen
Thermometers
Anti-diarreal medication
Vitamins
Fluids with electrolytes such as Gatorade or Pedialyte
Cleansing agent/soap
Disinfectants such as Lysol or bleach
Flashlight
Batteries
eta:

i also did some searching, and the wall street journal has an avian flu tracker:
http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB ... t=h1n1+map

if you look in the note to reader in italics at the top, click the H5N1 map link, and a map opens, updated in FEB 2008. this map is the WHO tracking of avian flu. kind of interesting.
I'm willing to bet that my family isn't the only one that has failed to take these steps. :lol:
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Re: H1N1

Post by lovelynb » Sat Nov 14, 2009 3:50 pm

Steps? I didn't even realize we were supposed to take any steps at all. That's a long list. When was I supposed to get all that done.
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Re: H1N1

Post by ccMarie » Sat Nov 14, 2009 7:44 pm

lovelynb wrote:Steps? I didn't even realize we were supposed to take any steps at all. That's a long list. When was I supposed to get all that done.
Last week. ;)
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Celebrate!

Post by holley » Fri Dec 04, 2009 1:46 pm

Looks like we dodged the bullet....this time around.
Disease has always been a scourge and to think we have anything but a temporary respite in our struggle with the microbial world would be dead wrong...Nice to know we still have time to take steps in preapredness :grin:
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Re: H1N1

Post by razor » Fri Dec 04, 2009 7:01 pm

SARS was deadly, but not particularly communicable.
H1N1 was quite communicable, but not especially deadly (by some people's lights though I fail to see how "regular" flus taking a terrible toll is "okay" but...uh, natch.)

Point is: the government will claim victory, but in many ways, they screwed up and the fact it wasn't worse this time was just dumb luck. Their vaunted pandemic flu emergency planning measures were a farce here on many levels. It wasn't the frontline health workers' fault. It was the bureaucrats. Given the warning they had, it was shameful. If this had been what it could have been, the survivors would be gathering up the pitchforks and torches for said bureaucrats.

Disgraceful.

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