WHO Declares Phase 6 Swine Flu Pandemic

Thursday, June 11, 2009

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The World Health Organization today declared a Phase 6 swine flu pandemic, the first global flu epidemic in 41 years, as infections climbed in the United States, Europe, Australia, South America and elsewhere.

In a statement sent to member countries, WHO said it decided to raise the pandemic warning level from phase 5 to 6 — its highest alert, after holding an emergency meeting on swine flu with its experts.

The long-awaited pandemic decision is scientific confirmation that a new flu virus has emerged and is quickly circling the globe. It will trigger drugmakers to speed up production of a swine flu vaccine and prompt governments to devote more money toward efforts to contain the virus.

The last pandemic — the Hong Kong flu of 1968, killed about 1 million people.

In the United States, where there have been more than 13,000 cases and at least 27 deaths from swine flu, officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the move would not change how the U.S. tackled swine flu.

This entry was posted in Epidemics, International News, News, Public Health, Swine Flu and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to WHO Declares Phase 6 Swine Flu Pandemic

  1. retahyajyajav says:

    We’re half way through 2009.

    The NIH had better have a swine flu vaccine ready by winter because if this epidemic combines with the regular influenza we get from Asia beginning in December, we could be looking at millions ill and hundreds of thousands dead in the U.S. alone.

  2. Harry says:

    The WHO is a day late a swine foolish. This flu has traveled around the world infecting thousands. Can someone explain what they were waiting for?

  3. Fran says:

    The #%@#$@#$ CDC has taken it DOWN a notch– only posting updates once a week, on Fridays now. WTF? I went to the site, as my State, Oregon reported it’s first death, confirmed, from Swine flu, this last week.
    I can’t believe they are so lax about simply updating a damned spreadsheet on their web sight.

    People should have updated info about their local numbers of cases & deaths, that IS the CDC’s role, right?

    When my 20 year old college student son came down with a fever a week ago, the local hospital said they were not even testing for swine flu unless people were so sick as to be hospitalized, or other apparent link (recently in Mexico, or exposed to a known diagnosed person).

    His fever broke the next day, but that kind of handling could lead to a…. pandemic.

  4. Fran says:

    I encourage people to go to the CDC website…. they have a SEND COMMENTS link on the right hand side… tell them 1x a week posting updates is not good enough.

    http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/

  5. bradfrmphnx says:

    Haven’t heard a peep out of Napalitano. How about some updates on a vaccine Janet?

  6. The flu has a way of evolving into deadlier more resistant strains, and that is what causes the most concern. It seems like we should all eat less pork, thereby reducing hog factory populations, and that may slow down the evolution of future flu strains?

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