Tuesday, April 9, 2013

pre-figuring the H7N9

H7N9 is the latest flu scare.

I have been working on book reviews, so I thought I would just link to the latest source material.

The New Bird Flu, and How to Read the News About It
Maryn McKenna, Wired, 5 April 2013 (hat tip: MR)
And H7N9 might not, as well. It is far too soon to say, despite the rapidly escalating case count and the reports — which came in while I was writing this — of a possible animal reservoir in pigeons and a possible human-to-human case. I have been writing about flu and possible pandemics since 1997 — for what it’s worth, I wrote the first story in the US in 1997 about that first H5N1 case in Hong Kong — and so at this early point, what I most want to say is this: We all love scary diseases. (If you didn’t, you wouldn’t be reading this blog.) But there is a fog of war in disease emergencies, just as there is in military ones, and it is very easy to get lost in it.

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