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Daily Archives: April 30, 2009
Dr. Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organization emphasizes the dangers of virulent swine flu mutations and the need for ongoing vigilance: “For the first time in history we can track the evolution of a pandemic in real time. … Continue reading
I guess evolution’s true. It started as a pig virus, but then the swine flew. Bit pig, bit bird, bit us. Hybrid, efficient, new. Call it “pigavian flu,” sent from me to you. Obama can’t save us; no telling it, “sod … Continue reading
Whether or not the source for H1N1 was a Mexican pig farm (and this is by no means certain), the implication that this virus is somehow a “Mexican flu” and should be called Mexican flu borders on the racist, and carries … Continue reading
The Los Angeles Times today says that there may be indications that swine flu symptoms in those Americans infected are becoming more severe. That’s the bad news. The good news is that the virus may not be a very fast spreader: … Continue reading
According to the Los Angeles Times today, both face masks and frequent hand washing provide equal levels of protection: [N]o single action . . . will provide complete protection in areas with confirmed swine flu cases, health officials said. It … Continue reading
Swine Flu, Steven Spielberg’s JAWS, and When to Call People Out of the Water: Barack Obama Meet Roy Scheider
It seems to me that, in the midst of the Swine Flu pandemic, Steven Spielberg’s classic 1970s film, Jaws, deserves another look. In that film, Brody (Roy Scheider) struggles between balancing public safety with the disruption of an economy. This … Continue reading
Swine Flu and Darwinian Evolution: Is This Flu Strain Likely to Mutate into Milder Forms—or More Virulent Ones?
Two scientists appear to be saying contradictory things in a Los Angeles Times article on Swine Flu, but actually they are not. One scientist is quoted as saying that viruses tend to become symbiotic with their hosts: As the virus … Continue reading
Tissues and Sanitizing Hand Wipes: Two Inexpensive Things That You Need to Buy and Use Now to Protect Yourself, and Your Family, from Swine Flu
According to the New York Times today, Britain has started a new ad campaign to slow the spread of Swine Flu: In Britain on Thursday, authorities launched an advertising campaign urging people to sneeze into tissues and to wash their … Continue reading
A Reminder That Doorknobs, School Desktops, Shopping Cart Handlebars, and Buttons Are Vectors for the Spread of Swine Flu
This today in the New York Times: In Hong Kong, where health checks are being conducted on passengers arriving at the city’s airport, janitors put up fresh sheets of plastic film over elevator buttons so that any sick people pressing … Continue reading