Skip to comments.Pandemic Preparedness
Posted on 02/14/2006 5:00:06 AM PST by Judith Anne
THE ARRIVAL OF avian flu in Africa means that the bird epidemic is officially out of control. None of the methods used against it so far -- mass vaccination of poultry flocks in China, mass bird slaughter across Southeast Asia -- has prevented wild birds from spreading the H5N1 virus across the globe, to Italy, Greece, Bulgaria and Azerbaijan, as well as Siberia and Indonesia. The flu has probably been killing birds in Africa for many months and will probably not be stopped: In poor countries with weak or nonexistent veterinary controls, where chickens are the only source of protein and no compensation for farmers for loss of their livestock is likely, it will be impossible to enforce either mass vaccinations or mass slaughter
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
My ping list may or may not be out of date...if you were pinged and didn't want to be, I'm sorry. If you were not pinged and wanted to be, I'm sorry. I'm not going to be able to keep the list up anymore, but I hardly every use it.
Prayer needed. It's looking like a more realistic event every day.
Ammo, canned food, ammo, Bibles, ammo, firewood, ammo, baby wipes, ammo, generator... It's kind of like getting ready for hurricane season.
Thanks for the ping!
Could be a long season.
You're welcome, Joe.
Yeah, a 6-18 month hurricane.
Preparing for a Pandemic- Medical Advice
Did I mention lots of prayer? And more prayer. I suppose we better have some major league healing anointing too!
A vaccine cannot be developed until it mutates into a form which is highly human to human transmissible (and thus has a lower pathogenicity). If and when that happens, the virus will have already spread worldwide (est. around 7 weeks once the reqd mutation has taken place). It takes at least 6 months to make a vaccination from the final mutated strand. There is a book titled "The Great Influenza" by John Barry about the 1918 pandemic. There were two groups that were able to avoid the pandemic. One was a military base on an island that imposed a strict quarantine. The other was a small town in Colorado that did the same thing. All deliveries to the town had to be left outside of the town. If you couldn't effectively quarantine yourself and caught it, then the most effective treatment was bed rest until at least 2 weeks after the symptoms had passed. It's eyeopening to see how all of the governmental levels seemed to collapse, like Katrina, when faced with such a problem.
I expect it will first show up in South America if and when it makes it into this hemisphere, or coming down the Pacific flyway from the Aleutians.
So far, human to human contagion does not appear to have developed (Thank God), but the effects on domestic and wild fowl could be devastating.
A vaccine cannot be developed until it mutates into a form which is highly human to human transmissible (and thus has a lower pathogenicity).
There is no guarantee that lower pathogenicity must accompany higher transmissibility. None whatsoever. Some viruses do change that way, but others do not.
I think the WHO and CIDRAP are now saying that limited h2h transmission has occurred--h2h, but not h2h2h etc.
You think you have enough ammo? LOL!
I reload, so "I need more target ammo" is a great excuse to get out of watching figure skating.
you forgot gas for the generator ... unless yours runs on some other source :)
Bump to save my spot,thank you Judith Anne.
What's a matter with figure skating:)
Thank you for the ping Judith Anne.
When the pandemic hits, FEMA needs to hand out lots of $2,000 voucher cards to be spent any way the recipient wants to spend it. That should help - throwing money at problems fixes them. That's what the response to FEMA has taught the country.
Nice map, thanks for posting it. I guess we'd better watch the Maritimes instead...
Lower pathogenicity results in the host having a better chance of survival, and thus of transmitting the disease, before the host itself dies of it. With the current high pathogenicity level (over 50% mortality), the host dies too quickly before the disease can be spread. As with the 1918 flu, once it lost some of its pathogenicity (I think overall it had an 8% mortality), it spread faster and easier. If it were to remain at a >50% mortality rate, many hosts would die before transmission could occur, thus the transmission rate would not be nearly as high as if the mortality rate were lower.
Viruses mutate, sometimes rapidly, but not evolve. Just as in viruses of past, they can get deadlier or weaker. It's like throwing the dice everytime a host is infected.
As for the ammo posts, I was at the gun show last weekend and many people were commenting on how ammo is being purchased, or stockpiled, now. Many vendors were out of the popular 7.62x39, and the cheap ammo, like Wolf or Bear, were almost nonexistent. I also saw many people there who were obviously at their first show and didn't even know what to call the AR-15 they were looking at. Lots of people seem to be getting worried......
When the deaths start mounting in the Middle East, we can just say that the 12th Iman has arrived, er?
No, influenza viruses, all of them, are transmissible BEFORE the host shows any sign of illness. I've heard the reasoning you expound above before, but not from any serious researcher. There is no reason for the virus H5N1 to lose pathogenicity in a supposed tradeoff for easier transmissibility. That kind of statement imputes human reasoning to a semi-living complex molecule. For example, unless the newer drugs intervene, HIV is invariably fatal. No loss of pathogenicity there...
And you may disagree, but mutations are the one and only cause of evolution in my book.
Thanks, blam. Appreciate the links.
Thanks for the ping, Judith_Anne.
We're running out of time, it seems. Prayers that this can somehow be averted.
I think you're right. To me, I think more people are worried about terrorism and the polarization in this country than bird flu. But, even with Iran enriching uranium, is that really a reason to stockpile ammo? Is there a new threat of terrorism spooking people? Not that I've seen. Polarization, as seen in the Alito hearings, maybe. I dunno. Most people I talk to don't seem to be aware of H5N1 or have any knowledge of Microbiology, but sales are up. I shopped for some 7.62 and had problems finding it but .223 was easy to find. Something is spooking people.
Yes, flu viruses are ALL transmissible before symptoms appear. However, if the host were to die in 3 days from the onset of symptoms, as opposed to two weeks, then he has less chance to infect someone. The longer he lives and interacts with other potential hosts, the more the chance of a transmission. With the current H5N1, symptoms appear on average of 3 days after exposure. So, everyone has a base potential of 3 days to spread the virus. Now, lets say the mortality rate is 100% (highly pathogenic). Well, then death is imminent and the host will be infectious until that time (varies as you know by lots of factors). As we drop the mortality rate, or as the virus loses it's pathogenicity, the host will live longer, as when faced with a weaker virus, his ability to survive it, will increase. Thus, if he is infected with a virus that has a 10% mortality rate, he should be able to stay alive longer, and potentially defeat it, thus increasing the time available to interact with others and infect them. That is what I meant in my statement. I have read/ heard similar propositions from various sources, and that was even discussed in the book I mentioned. Am I way off my rocker here? I'm not a Microbiologist but have read alot about it. If you'd like, message me. I'm always trying to learn more about the potential of H5N1.
Bird flu found in Germany: http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/L1444456.htm
Bird flu in Iran and Austria:
I have found that the Reuters service is much quicker to report than any go'vt or NGO. Apparently the children in Nigeria were not infected.
Someone like 2ndreconmarine might be interested in investigating alternate epidemiological models i.e. high morbidity/low pathocenicity vs. low morbidity/high pathogenicity and the resulting mortality. What is the optimally bad combination?
Of course, as JA has pointed out, there is no guarantee that a combination of high morbidity and high pathogenicity can't happen.
The thing that is annoying is when don't worry be happy pollys (not anyone in this thread) come on and say "I absolutely, positively guarantee H2H H5N1 will be LOW Pathogenicity!".
Insert photo of Baghdad Bob Here.
It is a suvivalist site that is tracking H5N1 quite nicely
NO, FRiend, you are absolutely not off your rocker. I, too, have read those optimistic predictions that viruses become less pathogenic as they become more transmissible. This is, in my opinion, just somebody's wild hope, that because it has happened before, it will happen this time, so don't worry, be happy.
There is no way of predicting which mutations will happen, and there is absolutely no reason to think that the mutations now occurring have made H5N1 less pathogenic. The same 50%+ human mortality rate seems to hold.
The pollys have noted rightly that there are some Vietnamese who have tested positive for an H5N1 variant and who are not ill. There are also numerous family clusters, presumably most bird-to-human cases with a very high mortality rate, in Vietnam. H5N1 is evolving all around the world, and in some areas, may mutate to be less serious than in others. So far, no indication.
But there are also two types of H5N1 around, at LEAST, and presently in Canada the low path (LP H5N1) has been found in birds. It is not known at this time if LP H5N1 gives any immunity to high path (HP) H5N1, and presently there is laboratory evidence using chicken cells, if I recall correctly, that it does not, they are too different.
In any case, ALL H5N1 is tracked on this continent, and if H5N1 was a significant factor, which it does not appear to be, it would be noted and discussed. Most researchers have given up on the idea of HP and LP and are just concentrating on where the HP will go from here. The African strains as well as all others seem to all be HP.
I completely understand the hope that as H5N1 becomes more widespread and perhaps gains the ability to transmit h2h2h etc., it will be less pathogenic, maybe on the order of H1N1 from 1918 with a mortality rate under 10%. But I don't think that will happen, call me a pessimist, it certainly doesn't seem to be.
One early family cluster in Vietnam was an 11 yo girl, to her mother, to her aunt, all three died. No others in the family were reported ill...I don't know if there was bird exposure in all three patients either, but that outbreak died (although there were many others in Vietnam...
Couple of typos in that post above, sorry all.
"In any case, ALL H5N1 is tracked on this continent and if LP H5N1 was a significant factor..."
Last paragraph, last line "...but that outbreak died out and didn't continue (although there were many other outbreaks in Vietnam)."
I clicked the frugal squirrel website and couldn't find any place to register, and it said one needed to log in to see anything. Correct me if I'm wrong, but any advice on registering? Looks interesting.
Soaring Patriot Squirrel
For a gift of $100 per year you can become a Soaring Patriot Squirrel. You can pick a tasteful graphic for use under your handle and will receive your Soaring Patriot Squirrel designation.
* Membership will run through December 31, 2006.
* You will also be able to purchase all books and CDs in the Frugal Store at a 10% discount through December 31, 2006 by calling our toll free number.
* Entrance into The Nut House, a forum for members to gather and talk outside the ears of lurkers.
So much for my investigative abilities.
Pay $100? My squandering would help another squirrel be frugal. I think not.
I'll get back to you...
The bird flu virus is only two mutations away from a form that can spread easily between people, sparking a pandemic in which millions could die, the UN bird flu chief said in an interview published in Portugal.
"Only two mutations are needed for it to become easily transmissible among humans," Dr David Nabarro, who heads the UN drive to contain the virus, told weekly newspaper Expresso.
"I wake up every morning thinking that today could be the day that I will see a report about a strange case of bird flu among humans," he said.
The H5N1 bird flu virus has killed tens of millions of birds since 2003 and there have been at least 165 confirmed cases of the strain spreading to humans, causing about 90 deaths, mostly in Asia.
The virus has spread from Asia to eastern Europe and Nigeria this week reported Africa's first known outbreak of the deadly strain of the disease.
Experts have long warned that the H5N1 virus could mutate into a form that is easily transmitted by humans and spark a global pandemic potentially killing millions.
Dr Nabarro said he has told governments around the world to prepare for the arrival of a human-to-human strain of the virus "as if this will happen tomorrow."
In 1918, an influenza pandemic that is believed to have originated in birds killed more than 40 million people around the world.
Subsequent pandemics in 1957 and 1968 had lower death rates but still caused widespread disruption.
"But although meetings among international scientists will be held this summer, in the hopes that they will exchange information and speed up research, officials at the Department of Health and Human Services agree that they still "don't have visibility" about what everyone is doing. Furthermore, some U.S. companies say that they remain confused about this country's vaccine development program, which lacks a timeline, leadership and clear incentives for the private sector."
By Karin Strohecker BERLIN (Reuters) - Three more countries said on Tuesday they had detected cases of deadly bird flu in wild swans, with Germany, Iran and Austria the latest to find the virus that has killed 91 people worldwide.
Austria and Germany became the third and fourth European Union countries to report H5N1 bird flu, just three days after the bloc's first instances were confirmed by Italy and Greece.
Germany said its results came from initial tests. Both countries said samples of the dead birds had been sent to the EU's reference laboratory in Britain for confirmation.
Experts had said it was only a matter of time before the H5N1 strain dangerous to humans broke out in Iran, a wintering place for wildfowl that may be carriers. Neighboring Iraq, Azerbaijan and Turkey had already reported outbreaks.
The highly pathogenic H5N1 strain of the virus has killed at least 91 people in Asia and the Middle East, according to the World Health Organization.
Experts fear H5N1 may mutate into a form that can spread between people and cause a pandemic that could kill millions.
New cases of H5 bird flu were found in Romania, Europe's largest wetlands and a major migratory route for wild birds.
Tests were under way in Britain to see if the new samples were H5N1, of which Romania and neighbor Bulgaria have already had cases.
Germany said it would bring forward to February 17 a ban on keeping poultry outdoors, and Italy said police had impounded more than 80,000 chickens and 7,000 eggs from farms in the south that were not respecting health norms.
Thanks. Let me know about the frugal squirrel thing when you find out, at your convenience.
Yup, I've been following the bird flu thing for quite some time, I take it seriously. I don't think it will be TEOTWAWKI, but it makes sense to think about it now and then and take precautions.