Sunday, October 25, 2009

Flu - It Can Ruin Your Day.

Between 1918-1919 an influenza A virus (H1N1) killed between 50 and 100 million people in the world. Original estimates had the deaths at 20-30 million, but more recent studies establish the number of actual deaths from the Spanish flu as between 50 and 100 million. The flu was likely started in the U.S., but until recently it was believed that it started in Europe, and became commonly known as the Spanish flu.

(Grossly overcrowded hospitals were unable to treat the victims of the Spanish flu).

(Public Warnings Posted)

The Spanish flu was an influenza A virus from a swine or an avian host of a mutated H1N1 virus. Sound familiar? Sources of that flu have been kept in laboratories in the U.S., and taken out in recent years and used to conduct research. Could our labs have accidentally let something out of the lab and into the public? I think they made a movie about that.

(The Spanish Flu began during World War I, and was spread through the tents and barracks which housed young Americans who had been drafted for war. Then they were put on ships and sent to Europe, and spread the flu around the world).

(Tents for housing the sick)

(There was no effective treatment for the flu. People were advised to avoid coughing, sneezing, sharing glasses, to stay home if they got sick. But once they got sick, there was no real medical help available).

Lots of announcements in recent days about this current flu. Emergency declarations issued by the White House waiving all sorts of normal federal regulations for hospitals (in case of mass outbreaks). Only 12 million doses of the vaccine have been shipped (for a population of 300 million), so is panic setting in? Remember that originally they said everyone would need 2 doses, but suddenly they say one is okay. Is that just because they don't have enough, so they're hoping that one will provide some protection? As noted in an earlier post, the repeated claims by the government that young people are dying in disproportionate numbers is not borne out by the reporting by the CDC, at least in this country. Is that statement simply because they think this is the same as the 1918 flu, which did have a much higher death rate in younger people?

Stay tuned.

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