Thursday, April 23, 2009
Swine flu outbreak in Texas, California
Reuters in Britain is reporting that seven people have been hit by a bizarre strain of swine influenza, in California and Texas, with some cases near the border.
The swine flu strain is H1N1, not H5N1 which corresponds to avian influenza. The swine flu appears to be spreading person-to-person and not from animals. April seems like a late time of year to report a flu outbreak.
The link is here.
The CDC says that work is already starting on a specific vaccine.
CDC’s page on Swine flu is here.
The 1976 swine flu scare, during President Ford’s administration, makes for interesting reading, which started after the death of a soldier at Fort Dix, NJ. The aggressive vaccination program led to some cases of Guillain-Barre syndrome. A typical summary "1976: Fear of a Great Plague" (by Paul Mickle, the Trentonian) is here.
Friday, CNN reported that CDC had matched the virus in the US to Mexico, where there have been 1000 cases and 68 deaths, with closings of public accommodations, link is here. There may be cases in New York. It's unclear how effective current vaccines or antiviral drugs will be.
April 25, 2009
CNN reports that the family of a Texas teenager was quarantined, here.
Here is a CNN video today on the problem.