Public health preparedness

Effect Measure

Category archives for Public health preparedness

What are we to make of the swine flu pandemic? The only thing I feel confident about is that it will be some time before we really know. A great deal of data and experience was gained in the year since the pandemic H1N1 took everyone by surprise but it will be a while before…

No fly disease regs don’t fly

Better late than never. When the Bush administration proposed sweeping airport quarantine rules in 2005, even those of us most concerned about avian influenza thought it was a fruitless policy on scientific grounds, not to mention issues of civili liberties and economics. The airlines hated it, too:

Flu in hospital workers

The AMA just took over a journal called Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. In fact they proudly announced they were the exclusive publisher and distributor of the journal, formerly published by Lippincott, Williams and Wilkins. I wouldn’t even know about it except it was in connection with a press release of an article likely…

Flu: the gift that keeps on giving

There is a good Canadian Press by Michael Macdonald about the often long time it takes to make a full recovery from flu. A full blown case of classical influenza can really lay you low for days or weeks. People often report never having felt so sick. But once you are “recovered” and back to…

Flu: Georgia on CDC’s mind

A day or two after CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports (MMWR) released a report about risks to pregnant women from pandemic 2009 flu, CDC held a suddenly announced press briefing about the current H1N1 situation (I listened in but a transcript should be up on the site by the time you read this; check…

Blood transfusions and pandemic flu

As predicted, the pandemic of 2009 is beginning to yield more data, some of it directly applicable to pressing practical questions. The answers are still preliminary, and, as with all science, subject to revision. But it’s what we have at the moment, and a letter that just appeared in the CDC sponsored journal Emerging Infectious…

Another swine flu virus

There is an old vaudeville joke where a man goes to the doctor complaining about pain in his arm: Doctor: Have you ever had it before? Man: Yes, once before. Doctor: Well, you have it again. CDC reported on their weekly FluView website on Friday that the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) reported to…

So far the pandemic of 2009 has been bad enough but not anywhere near as bad as one could imagine. Let’s hope it stays that way. While winning new knowledge from actual disease and sickness is not anyone’s favorite strategy, it is likely we will learn a great deal about influenza in the years to…

Epidemiology at the state level is shrinking

I’m an epidemiologist and I train epidemiologists so you expect me to think epidemiology is important to public health. Epidemiology describes the pattern of diseases in the community and tries to figure out why some patterns exist and not others. It is used for both applied health research (causes of disease and disease outbreaks), disease…

Public health: flunking the test

We complain when there isn’t enough swine flu vaccine and we complain when our health departments don’t count all the cases. It’s probably good so many people are out of work and can’t eat in restaurants, because they aren’t getting inspected because all available staff are trying to deal with the flu pandemic: