Britain braces for 100,000 swine flu cases a day


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Yowza! that's a whole lot of people!! At least, while I'm seeing a lot of people predicting POTENTIAL spread, I'm not seeing any mass panic. None of my friends in Britain has even said a word about it, and one person I asked said he didn't give a damn and was certainly not going to wear a mask. One thing worries me:

"Earlier this week, health officials reported the first instance of Tamiflu resistance, in a Danish patient who had been taking the drug. Experts worry that if Tamiflu is given out widely as per Britain’s earlier approach that could make it easier for the virus to develop resistance."

and I'm glad to see it worries the experts, too. I haven't heard a single voice in Japan (and sorry, I only mention it as a reference since I'm here) voice this concern. In fact, the only concern I've heard voiced over Tamiflu is in relation to arguments over whether or not it causes delusional behaviour -- instead it seems a lot of people are PUSHING for the drug.

Stop with the meds, people, bottom line. This flu is little more than a cold, at present, and over-medicating won't help one wit.

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24 Hogs Later?

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Stanley: It's 28, but good call.

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Much of this spread of this infection in the UK has got to be related to poor personal and public hygiene. I worked in London from August 1990 until July 1991 and in my neighbourhood near Wembley four out of the six secondary schools in the immediate area closed because they had a breakout of Typhoid. Anyone will tell you that this can be avoided by washing one's hands after using the toilet. Surprisingly almost none of my male colleagues did that, and I was even more horrified to hear that almost none of my female colleague did either, and they, many of them, had responsibility for food preparation. (I brought my own lunch!). One of Kenta-kun's "Kantan-jya" segments on NHK? which ran last winter on a Friday evening did a segment on French restaurants having toilet doors which lock until the user washed her/his hands. 56% of French men and 66% of French women said they never washed their hands after a visit. 100,000 cases a day? May be even more if they haven't learned to wash their cotton-pickin' hands after using the toilet! How did they ever run an Empire?

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LIBERTAS - "Much of this spread of this infection in the UK has got to be related to poor personal and public hygiene"

Thats a pretty big generalisation. Typhoid outbreaks in the UK are extremely rare and are almost always traced back to someone returning from a visit to the Indian subcontinent where the disease is carried in food or water contaminated with human waste. If the outbreak was in Wembley, the demographics would suggest this is likely.

But back to swine flu. You're right, good personal hygiene will help reduce the risk of contracting the disease but your post looks more like an excuse to take a cheap shot at the UK. Did they upset you while you were there?

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Actually, I enjoyed my time in the UK, and still visit to see friends. My comments stem from the UK Govt.'s own anti-swine-flu campaigns, asking people to sneeze and cough into tissues that are then disposed of properly, and which urges people to wash hands regularly with ordinary (non-antibacterial soap) etc. etc. etc. By their own admission they're fighting a public and personal hygiene crisis of a sorts. Typhoid outbreaks, lamentably, are a common occurrence, locally addressed and rarely announced, in Britain, sorry to say.

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"56% of French men and 66% of French women said they never washed their hands after a visit."

And 96.4% of statistics are made up on the spot.

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So from the UK governments advice for people to sneeze into tissues and be sure to wash their hands you interpret they're fighting a public and personal hygiene crisis? Sounds more like you're overeacting.

Typhoid infections are hardly going to be announced, but they are reported. On a very quick scan of the web I understand there were 147 cases in the UK in 2002, 101 were acquired abroad with a recent increase in cases put down to people not being vaccinated prior to travel. I wouldnt call that common and certainly not evidence of a personal hygiene crisis.

The UK is a densly populated country with people in close proximity, particularly on public transport. It is inevitable that swine flu is spreading there as it is everwhere. The 100,000 a day infection rate is up there because someone did some mathematical modelling and it makes a good headline.

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Some people have been holding swine flu parties to get people together and catch the mild version so that with luck they will have some healthy anti-bodies when this thing turns nasty this autumn.

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Generally, in most countries I've been in the lax hygiene has been noticeable. Here in Japan, I regularly see women going to the restroom and not bothering to wash their hands after wards (yet they take the time to fix their makeup). In the U.S I would see women who TALK on their cells in the toilet, yet can't even be bothered to rinse their hands after, let alone give them a good scrub. So, I don't really think the hygiene issue is a cultural one, but more of a global shame. Why don't we all just decide from here on to start making hand washing a priority? At LEAST after we use the restroom, that is.

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Stats were NHK's and the inference on a hygiene crisis was mine, based on the info I saw being posted by the UK Min. of Health. My, my, my we've really touched a nerve, haven't we. I didn't come out and say Brits were hygiene challenged, just connected the best dots I've been able to assemble. I defer to the expertise of the obviously insulted British posters here, then: tell us all why there have been 147 cases of Typhoid in a first world country in 2002, and why exactly swine flu is expected to hit 100k-cases per day in 2009? Sounds like third world conditions to me? Anyone else?

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"My, my, my we've really touched a nerve, haven't we. "

Only in as much as you're panic mongering based on a bit of conjecture and your own prejudice.

"tell us all why there have been 147 cases of Typhoid in a first world country in 2002"

Already did, but for your benefit its the same reason there are around 400 American cases per year, because people travel to the Indian subcontinent and take it back.

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I don't want to get off the topic here but it should not be called SWINE flu anymore, hurting the pork industry, it is H1N1, president Obama called it H1N1 a few months ago, and JT should also call by the correct name, the WHO calls it H1N1, etc..not swine flu!

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