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Posts tagged: swine flu

Coming swine flu regulations…

Good morning, Netizens…

Now that President Obama has declared Swine Flu an emergency priority, here are some things our government might do to prepare us for the coming Apocalypse.

Ban all pig feed lots, mud bogs and other places where pigs do those gross and nasty things that pigs do while smacking their porcine lips and leering speculatively at you through their white eyelashes.

Warn nation’s children to stay away from all swine, either two-legged or four-legged, but especially the latter.

If your ham hocks become infected during dinner, build a tall wall of mashed potatoes to prevent contamination of your peas.

Distribute both real flu shots to all government employees and Fortune 500 employees. Everyone else can stand in lines and wait until more shots are available or die waiting.

Check all pig visas to see if they have been traveling to other countries. They don’t have a visa? Tell them to get a Master Card or else deport them.

Remind citizens that the swine flu emergency gives you the perfect excuse to ignore relative’s requests for a Thanksgiving or Christmas get-togethers.

Create a high-level government cooperative involving all aspects of the federal government in case the crap really hits the fan.


The reality of Swine Flu Virus…

Good evening, Netizens…

David Horsey’s cartoon pretty much has Swine Flu Virus pegged.

Unless one has actually caught Swine Flu, you never really have respect for it. It’s just like the flu, you feel like a Mac truck just rolled over you on the concrete sidewalk, you have a low-grade fever, you have a cough like a pack-a-day smoker and simply want a place to hide. Of course, some people who caught the Swine Flu died, but fortunately the percentages are low.

But it is infectious, having migrated to nearly every country in the world, and it is spreading fairly rapidly.

So what is a pandemic?

It must meet three criteria:

It must be the emergence of a disease new to a population, and;

The agent infects humans causing serious illness, and ;

The agent must spread easily and quickly among humans.

You might think from the manner in which the word pandemic is bandied around it is much worse than it actually is. At least for now.


Swine flu hysteria…

Good afternoon, Netizens…

This time of year, Cancun, Mexico is typically bustling with touristas. Compare that mental image to this picture shot yesterday.

Is this hysteria we see unfolding before the National News Media? What about the people in Mexico who have died of Swine Flu Virus? Are more people here in the United States going to die of Swine Flu? There are a lot more questions and even a tinge of hysteria in the News Media about Swine Flu that perhaps do not apply to health care in the United States.

Adela María Gutiérrez fell ill in the beginning of April with what she thought was a bad cold. She tried aspirin, antibiotics, bed rest and moist towels, but nothing brought down her soaring fever, reduced her aches and pains, or boosted her energy level.

It would be more than a week before Mrs. Gutiérrez, a mother of daughters ages 10, 17 and 20, went to Oaxaca’s General Hospital, where she arrived listless and barely able to breathe, her extremities blue from a lack of oxygen. Thus, because she waited to get medical assistance, she became the first victim of Swine Flu (H1N1) to die. The mindset in Mexico seems to be, according to various medical sources, that you wait until you have tried everything else before you go see the doctor. That, rather than hysteria, may be why people are dying of the latest variant of Type A flu.

Furthermore, Mexico’s public health budget is approximately 3% of their gross domestic product — within the range of spending by other major Latin American economies, but well below the rate in developed countries such as the United States. Mexico has only about half as many hospital beds per capita than the United States. Hospital overcrowding in Mexico is common everywhere you look and sometimes medical help is hard to get.

In an acknowledgment that Mexicans frequently act as their own doctors, the government’s announcements, played repeatedly on the radio, advise people not to self-medicate and instead to seek out medical attention.

There is a lot of confusion about H1N1 flu virus, but several facts stand out rather clear: disease forecasting — like weather forecasting — is more of a guide to what might happen rather than a certain prediction of what will happen. Of course we remember how people ignored the hurricane warnings that preceded Katrina, don’t we?

Heed the warnings, but be shy about accepting hysteria. (Portions New York Times)


Swine flu continues to evolve…

Good morning, Netizens…

Today’s picture is grim. Nuns wear face masks during a closed door mass at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City on Sunday. Churches stood empty Sunday in predominantly Roman Catholic Mexico City after services were canceled, and health workers screened airports and bus stations for people sickened by a new strain of swine flu that experts fear could become a global epidemic.(AP Photo/Dario Lopez-Mills) (April 26, 2009)

People are dying out there as swine flu overwhelms the health care systems in various foreign countries. On Sunday, Canada became the third country to confirm cases of swine flu, while global health officials considered whether to escalate the current pandemic alert level.

The strain of A/H1N1 swine flu virus has been detected in several locations in Mexico and the United States, and now appears to be spreading human-to-human in New York, California, Texas, Kansas and Ohio.

Symptoms of the flu-like illness include a fever of more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37.8 degrees Celsius), body aches, coughing, a sore throat, respiratory congestion and, in some cases, vomiting and diarrhea. Although the virus is acquired directly from pigs, hence its name, there are some signs that it is already being spread from human-to-human exposure.

Like some news, by the time you read this, since this is an evolving story, more people will probably be infected; perhaps before the end of the week the World Health Organization will pronounce this as a World Pandemic as the virus continues to grow and evolve.

Authorities say the swine flu has not reached Washington State yet, and in the same breath state that samples are being tested for its presence by federal health authorities.

So how are you feeling?


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