Influenza (pandemic)

US, 26 countries launch effort to fight outbreaks

The U.S. and 26 other countries began a new effort Thursday to prevent and fight outbreaks of dangerous infectious diseases before they spread around the globe.

U.S. health officials called the Global Health Security Agenda a priority because too many countries lack the health infrastructure necessary to spot a new infection rapidly and sound the alarm before it has time to gain a foothold and even spread into other countries.


Why Global Health Security Is Imperative

When he opened the box, André Berro was wearing surgical gloves, mask, and eye protection—routine protocol for a CDC quarantine public health officer, but this was not a routine package. A U.S. Customs scan of the airmail package that arrived at the San Francisco airport from the Philippines showed an outline of what looked like several human skulls.


Human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus – update

The National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC) of China has notified WHO of nine additional laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus, including one death.
Details of four cases notified on 1 February 2014 are as follows:

H7N9 Cases in China Surge Past 200

The number of new infections in China’s H7N9 outbreak continues a steep ascent, with 23 more cases reported over the past 4 days, along with four deaths, one of them in a health worker at a Shanghai hospital.
The daily number of new H7N9 cases equals the pace of disease activity seen during the peak of the outbreak last spring. The disease is thought to be spreading from poultry to people in settings such as live markets, and the surge of new cases comes at a time of increased demand for poultry ahead of China's Lunar New Year celebrations later this month.

China confirms 11 more H7N9 cases, 1 fatal

Lab tests in China have confirmed 11 more H7N9 influenza infections over the past 3 days, including a fatal case, and Hong Kong has confirmed an H7N9 death in a previously reported case.
Those dead from the virus are a woman from Zhejiang province and a man from Hong Kong who got sick after visiting the mainland.

CDC reports most severe flu seasion in four years

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported widespread flu in more than 10 states, and levels are higher at this point in the flu season than they have been in the past four years.
Infectious Disease Specialist at Vanderbilt University William Schaffner said swine flu is causing more than 95 percent of flu cases, ABC News reports.

H1N1 Vaccine Running Out In Alberta, Flu Shot Expected To Be Gone By Friday

Alberta is running on the last of its H1N1 vaccines and there might not be any more left on the planet.
The Alberta government confirmed while they have secured 65,000 doses of the flu vaccine, the supply is expected to run out by Friday, reports CBC News.
Alberta Health Services said they've obtained the last doses available worldwide from an Italian manufacturer. It's unclear whether more – if any – of the vaccine will be produced.

More H1N1 cases confirmed, death count rising

H1N1 has been blamed for the deaths of 10 people in Alberta, and health officials worry the flu strain might be making its way east and are encouraging people to get the flu shot.
In Saskatchewan, six people have now died after contracting influenza.
Quebec's public health director, Horace Arruda, said the H1N1 strain is the most widespread, and those who got the flu shot in 2009 -- when a pandemic of H1N1 killed about 300 people in the province due to complications -- are no longer protected.

CDC warns H1N1 virus is causing severe flu in young adults

Each holiday season the festivities in a notable minority of households are disrupted by flu. Typically infants and seniors are most at risk of severe illness, but occasionally a strain that disproportionately affects young and middle-aged adults emerges. Early evidence suggests 2013-2014 could be such a year.