Effect Measure

CDC gets moving (we hope)

Our Wiki partner DemFromCT has this post at DailyKos this morning about a CDC media phone conference/advisory tomorrow on its new Public Service Announcements (PSA) on pandemic flu and its guidelines on community measures that can be taken in the absence of a vaccine. This is the kind of ratcheting up some will see as a new an ominous development, but that’s not my view. Instead I see it as the kind of thing that should to be done well in advance of anything happening, whether it happens or not. It is just good, routine public health practice.

We still need to see what these PSAs and guidelines look like and how much they will stimulate strengthening of the public health infrastructure. It will probably be a mixed achievement, but a step forward is still a step forward. Hat tip to Dem for alerting us.


  1. #1 Lea
    January 31, 2007

    revere: this is a quote from another blog: I say the year 2008 will roll around and there will be plenty of terrible problems in the world, but pandemic avian flu won’t be among them. Have also heard you say something similar.

    Would you please clarify your thoughts on this?

  2. #2 revere
    January 31, 2007

    Lea: Would you identify the other blog? Fumento is the one saying this as far as I know, but no one knows whether or when a pandemic is coming, including me. No one. Period.

  3. #3 Lea
    January 31, 2007

    Misread it, brain-fart, sincere apologies.


  4. #4 anon
    February 1, 2007

    when people are starting to “argue” with “period”
    we should become suspicious.
    If I wouldn’t believe that you are better in estimating
    the danger than others, then why should I read this blog ?

  5. #5 revere
    February 1, 2007

    anon: You think I am lying when I say I have nothing informative to convey about a prediction. I have asked you repeatedly for your estimate and you don’t provide it. Whether you continue reading here or not is up to you. I suppose it depends on your estimate of the value of reading here. What is that estimate? Exactly. Please provide.

  6. #6 anon
    February 1, 2007

    not true. I gave my estimate about a dozend of times,
    fist in Dec.2005 or Jan.2006 to monotreme.
    Mostly 10% per year for a pandemic. Also 15% once or twice
    and maybe 20% once, not sure. Varies over time.
    Actually, well , 10% per year.
    And you were aware of it.
    See here:
    post 24 and your reply to it, post 26 same page.

    I continue reading here, but I pick, what’s interesting for me. Disagreement about this issue doesn’t mean
    I won’t appreciate some/many of your posts.
    Of course, if I would believe you with this(which I don’t),
    I consequently had to discontinue…

  7. #7 revere
    February 1, 2007

    anon: I apologize. I didn’t remember that number from your comment. However I still don’t have an estimate. The more I learn about H5N1 the less certain I am. I could pick a number randomly but it wouldn’t be very informative. Is it 10%/year? Maybe, although I’m not even sure what that means. If we had ten years just like the one we went through there would be one that had a pandemic? What do you mean when you say 10%/year?

  8. #8 Anna
    February 1, 2007

    I listened to the CDC broadcast today. A female reporter called in and asked about the 9 recent pediatric flu deaths in Alabama along with another question. She did not specifically mention Birmingham only Alabama. The CDC response was essentially that pediatric flu deaths are not unusual. I check at least 4 other flu blogs and I never heard mention of 9 pediatric related flu deaths in Albama. I had heard the CDC had been called in. They determined there was nothing out of the ordinary and case was closed. How’s that for transparency?

  9. #9 crfullmoon
    February 1, 2007

    “mud’s the word”, Anna; you know they’ve admitted what terrifies them most is the public “panicking” (messing up the economy early? having pre-disaster adjustment reactions? dealing with their own mortality?) so, they just can’t figure out how to communicate a risk/impact possibly bigger than they can keep society from being busted over, I guess.

    The public are numerous, and would be motivated, given enough facts; tell them and let them rise to the challenge. Going to be so ugly if communites won’t prepare for un-normal global-historical-event sort of challenge. Better safe than screwed.

  10. #10 Anna
    February 2, 2007

    Corrects headline, initial paragraphs with revised information from Dr. Whitley that one child died, while nine more had life-threatening illnesses) By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Editor
    Dr. Richard Whitley of the University of Alabama at Birmingham said one child had died and nine had been treated in intensive care. He said he had sent samples from the children to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for analysis.

    This was a huge blunder for a Health and Science Editor

  11. #11 Greg
    February 3, 2007

    crfullmoon, the skills which people would use to evaluate pandemic risks are the same skills which they could use to evaluate political and advertising claims.

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