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Blunderov
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Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« on: 2009-11-02 04:31:05 »
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[Blunderov] WTF?





http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=15860

Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
To Counter Growing Criticism from Scientific and Medical Community


by Richard Gale and Dr. Gary Null

Global Research, October 29, 2009
Progressive Radio Network - 2009-10-26

President Obama and his top health officials are engaging in a major public relations effort to divert attention away from whether its swine flu vaccine is effective and safe – to whether there is enough of it to go around. And the media, as always, is cooperating fully. This echoes the way media debate was manipulated during the Vietnam and Iraq Wars. Instead of debating whether we should even be fighting those wars, the media debated only whether we were using the correct military strategy.

Increasing numbers of scientists and doctors are issuing harsh criticisms of the Government’s plan to vaccinate (forcibly if necessary) virtually the entire U.S. population with what they claim is a poorly tested vaccine that is not only ineffective against swine flu, but could cripple and even kill many more people than it helps.

The CDC’s public relations campaign has been running “scare” ads that portray swine flu as a full-blown “pandemic” responsible for snuffing out countless lives, and which, unless stopped by universal vaccination, could kill millions of American citizens. But scientists and health officials throughout the world have called the governments claims unjustified and deliberately misleading.

For example, Dr. Anthony Morris, a distinguished virologist and former Chief Vaccine Office at the U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA), states that “There is no evidence that any influenza vaccine thus far developed is effective in preventing or mitigating any attack of influenza” and that “The producers of these vaccines know they are worthless, but they go on selling them anyway.”

And in November 2007, the UK newspaper The Scotsman, made public warnings by the inventor of the “flu jab,” Dr. Graeme Laver. Dr. Laver was a major Australian scientist involved in the invention of a flu vaccine, in addition to playing a leading scientific role in the discovery of anti-flu drugs. He went on record as saying the vaccine he helped to create was ineffective and [that] natural infection with the flu was safer. “I have never been impressed with its efficacy,” said Dr. Laver.

We hear the assumption being made by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that the number of deaths from the H1N1 virus is at pandemic levels and now a “national emergency.” One would assume that with all of its resources, the New York Times’ October 26 front page story on the CDC’s statistics would be accurate: 20,000 hospitalizations and 1,000 deaths due to the swine flu. However, this is all fiction. And it is a fiction solely based upon the CDC’s own contradictory statements and actions.

Our independent investigations into the clinical trials and statistical studies of influenza vaccines reveal glaring discrepancies. Let us not forget that it is this same New York Times, with its “star” reporter Judith Miller, who led America into believing that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, tried to purchase yellow cake uranium from Niger, and had dealings with al-Qaeda. And let us also remember that it is the same CDC and health officials in Washington, including President Ford and his top health advisor F. David Matthews, who pushed through and propagandized an untested vaccine during the 1976 swine flu scare, which resulted in thousands of severely neurologically damaged Americans and about 500 reported deaths. Aside from permanent paralysis, many of these vaccine victims also underwent torturous processes for many years to get the government to recognize their illnesses and help cover their costs. Not only was the CDC’s prediction and vaccination campaign for the 1976 flu season a total disaster, it also turned into a deadly scandal, witnessed across the United States on 60 Minutes when Dr. David Sencer, then head of the CDC, confirmed that the vaccine was never field tested, that there were only several reported incidents of H1N1 infection and none of these had been officially confirmed, and then lied about the CDC having no prior evidence that the swine flu vaccine could cause severe and permanent neurological damage. The end result from the 1976 debacle cost the government $3.5 billion in damages, two-thirds were for severe neurological injury and death directly due to the CDC’s vaccination campaign.

Therefore, being anti-vaccine or pro-vaccine is not the most urgent issue. What is critical is whether or not there is legitimate, sound science to support either position; in this regard, the vaccine manufacturers and our federal health agencies have failed in the past, and continue to fail today. And they fail dismally. There is absolutely no evidence for sound-scientific protocol or anything resembling a gold-standard behind the swine flu infection statistics and vaccine efficacy and safety clinical trials to support Obama’s and his health advisors’ claims. Instead, the reports on hospitalizations and deaths due to the H1N1 virus are grossly distorted. What we are really witnessing is “official” science and statistics that are little more than propaganda.

One unfortunate development over the years is the notion that there is such a thing as a “flu season.” The truth is that we move annually into periods where there are dramatic increases in flu-like causing pathogens, however, the majority of these are unrelated to any strain of influenza virus. There can between 150 and 200 different infectious pathogens—adenovirus, rhinovirus, parainfluenza, the very common coronavirus and, of course, pneumonia—that produce flu-like symptoms, and worse, during a “flu season.” For example, how many people have heard of bocavirus, which is responsible for bronchitis and pneumonia in young children, or metapneumovirus, responsible for more than 5 percent of all flu-related illnesses? This is true during every flu season and this year is no different. Furthermore, all flu vaccinations, including the swine flu, are useless for protecting people from these many prevalent infectious organisms.

If we take the combined figure of flu and pneumonia deaths for the period of 2001, and add a bit of spin to the figures, we are left believing that 62,034 people died from influenza. The actual figures determined by Peter Doshi, then at Harvard University, are 61,777 died from pneumonia and only 257 from flu. Even more amazing, among those 257 cases only 18 were confirmed positive for influenza. A separate study conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics for the flu periods between 1979 through 2002 revealed the true range of flu deaths were between 257 and 3006, for an average of 1,348 per year.

The recent CBS Investigative Report, published on October 21, is one example. After the CDC refused to honor CBS’s Freedom of Information request to receive flu infection data for each individual state, the network performed independent outreach to all fifty states to get their statistics. Their report contradicts dramatically the CDC’s public relations blitz. For example, in California, among the approximate 13,000 flu-like cases, 86 percent tested negative for any flu strain. In Florida, out of 8,853 cases, 83 percent were negative. In Georgia and Alaska, only 2.4 percent and 1 percent respectively tested positive for flu virus among all reported flu-like cases. If the infectious-rate ratios obtained by CBS are accurate, the CDC’s figures are significantly reduced and agree with earlier predictions that the H1N1 virus will be simply an unwelcomed annoyance. So we are in the midst of an enormous medical hoax, a design and purpose that has yet to unfold completely, that will nevertheless reap huge revenues for the vaccine industrial complex.

Another example is a recent alarmist report issuing from Georgetown University, also usurped by federal health officials and their multimedia comrades to fuel a campaign of fear and panic. The report announced that over 250 students were infected by swine flu when in fact none of these students were tested for H1N1 infection. The university’s figure was based solely on a count of student visits to the health clinic and calls into an H1N1 hotline.

This is not the first time the CDC’s predictions for influenza strains have been overstated and miscalculated. In an interview on Swedish television, Dr. Tom Jefferson, head of vaccine studies at the prestigious international Cochrane Database Collaboration, after reviewing hundreds of influenza studies and statistical analyses, has said the WHO’s and CDC’s “performance is not very good.” And in an ITN News interview last month, Jefferson called the swine flu pandemic a “juggernaut they [the WHO, government agencies and vaccine makers] created.” For the 1992-1993 season, the prediction was off by 84 percent. For the 1994-1995 season, it was off 43 percent for the primary strain and off 87 percent and 76 percent for two other strains. The Laboratory Center for Disease Control’s study comparing vaccine strains with the strains appearing during the 1997-1998 season found the match was off by 84 percent. Again Dr. Jefferson in a Der Spiegel interview remarked,

“there are some people who make predictions year after year, and they get worse and worse. None of them so far have come about, and these people are still there making these predictions. For example, what happened with the bird flu, which was supposed to kill us all?... Swine flu could have even stayed unnoticed if it had been caused by some unknown virus rather than an influenza virus... An influenza vaccine is not working for the majority of influenza-like illnesses because it is only designed to combat influenza viruses. For that reason, the vaccine changes nothing when it comes to the heightened mortality rate during the winter months.”

Our review of all clinical trial studies conducted by the H1N1 vaccine makers for pre-licensing in the American market—CSL, Novartis, Sanofi-Pasteur, Medimmune and now GlaxoSmithKline—reveals they were poorly designed and feebly executed. Any professor in molecular biology or virology would fail a graduate student who presented a paper relying on research conducted in the manner of the studies the vaccine corporations submit to the FDA. Nevertheless, it is this lack of sound randomized, double-blind controlled placebo studies, particularly for inactivated virus vaccines, that our government is declaring definitive and is using to justify mass vaccination of our population.

Last week, Switzerland’s health authorities rejected Novartis’ new swine flu vaccine, Celtura, being targeted for women and children, because the company’s studies were insufficient to guarantee its safety. In addition, the new Novartis vaccine, which uses a cell base from dogs, was found to be contaminated with canine-specific bacteria. The Swiss newspaper, Tagesanzeiger, also noted there remains some suspicion that Novartis’ new vaccine may be a repackaging of an earlier 2008 vaccine responsible for killing almost two dozen homeless people during an illegal clinical trial in Poland. This is the same Novartis whose Fluvirin H1N1 vaccine being distributed in the US relied only on a hasty clinical efficacy and safety trial enrolling only a small number of health adults. Novartis likely remains unperturbed. The Swiss pharmaceutical giant has reported a $6.1 billion profit so far this year and expects to boost sales for the final quarter with its swine flu vaccine.

In July, the CDC announced it would cease testing and counting H1N1 virus infections. Their public reason was simply that they are convinced there is a pandemic and, therefore, accurate monitoring was unnecessary. On August 30, the CDC declared the states should report influenza and pneumonia-associated hospitalizations and deaths together, not singling out actual cases of H1N1 infection if there happen to be any actually confirmed from a laboratory. This has always been the CDC’s policy, and the 36,000 figure of annual flu deaths repeated ad nausea on their website and spewed from the media’s health pulpits for several years straight, does not distinguish between pneumonia, influenza and other flu-like pathogenic deaths. Perhaps it would make very little difference because the current rapid diagnostic tests for the H1N1 virus can range in only 10-50 percent accuracy.

Elsewhere in the world, particularly in Europe, civilians are increasingly rejecting the H1N1 vaccine. Recent polls in Germany and Austria show only 13 and 18 percent respectively willing to take the shot. In Sweden, four vaccine related deaths have been announced and almost 200 healthcare workers have reported becoming more seriously ill from the vaccination than they might have from a flu infection. In the US, anywhere from 90-99 percent of adverse events go unreported.

If people would simply shut off the CDC’s supported propaganda noise being blasted across the airwaves and newspapers— the spectacle of newscasters being inoculated, interviews with government health officials or private doctors and academics receiving consultation fees from drug makers, and the drivel of the New York Times—and simply do their homework, Americans would wake up and realize the hoax behind the swine flu pandemic. All of the information is before us. Nothing is hidden. All the contradictions and hypocrisies are contained within the massive vaccine industrial complex—including the government health agencies and professional medical associations. The lie is too large for them to not expose themselves if we simply look.

Richard Gale is the Executive Producer of the Progressive Radio Network and a former Senior Research Analyst in the biotechnology and genomic industries.

Dr. Gary Null is the host of the nation’s longest running public radio program on nutrition and natural health and a multi-award-winning director of progressive documentary films, including Vaccine Nation and Autism: Made in the USA. Dr. Null is also the plaintiff on a law suit against the FDA to prevent the launch of the swine flu vaccine until safety studies have been thoroughly conducted.



Richard Gale is a frequent contributor to Global Research.
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #1 on: 2009-11-02 11:56:44 »
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I'm a bit confused, Blunderov. To my thinking h1n1 is simply another flu virus albeit one that was not considered in the preparation of the current seasonal flu vaccine. As such the usual procedures in formulating and producing swine flu vaccine (my apologies to the pork industry which has little to nothing to do with this) ought not to be considerably different than any other flu vaccine. So while some might say its untested, so is ANY particular flu vaccine when first administered. However over the course of many flu seasons the methods of developing the various vaccines remains essentially the same, as long as we are talking about any kind of flu, even when the flu surprises us with an unforeseen strain.

Now of course its plenty fair to argue about the prevalence of swine flu vs. any other kind of flu, however I take exception to comparing it to malaria - which while plenty deadly is a completely different type of disease and for the most part with only occasional exception remains geographically limited to tropical settings. Otherwise, perhaps one may decide that it isn't worth the $10 - $20 for the h1n1 vaccine given the relative number of fatalities.  However if one falls within the risk groups, how is the h1n1 vaccine any more untested or problematic than ANY flu vaccine? This all simply reminds me of the typical hysteria that accompanies all sorts of vaccines. Yes, we will always have the anecdotal "evidence" of various individual children experiencing the onset of autism that happens to follow a vaccination, however the statistics clearly bear it out that these are simply coincidences. Statistics always trump anecdotes for anyone who cares to pay attention to such things.

PS. we should also be careful about comparing the post-mortem statistics of any regular flu season with the very early statistics of this particular season. Both of your visuals are extremely flawed this way.
« Last Edit: 2009-11-02 12:13:50 by MoEnzyme » Report to moderator   Logged

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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #2 on: 2009-11-02 12:00:42 »
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Quote:
[Blunderov] WTF?
[letheomaniac] My better half likes to say that when they can't sell you something using emotional blackmail they'll sell it to you using scare tactics. I'm sure Big Pharma's profits are booming.
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #3 on: 2009-11-02 12:55:15 »
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[letheomaniac] A bit of evidence demonstrating the depth of the Obama Administration's commitment to enriching the pharmaceutical industry.

Source: The Beast
Author: Allan Uthman
Dated: Undated (Issue #138)

DIVE ARTISTS
Dems 'lose' again on health care

Man. It’s been years that I’ve forced myself to observe, with muted horror, the degeneration of political discourse in America. Occasionally, I’ve even had the pleasure of taking part in it. But it seems I’m never quite cynical enough to predict the depths we’re willing to plumb as a nation.

I thought I was going to write a piece about how stupid it is that the right argues a public option is unfair because private insurance companies can’t compete against it. I mean, it really is an insane position, that we can’t have a public insurance option because it would provide better service for less money. And it’s equally insane to assert that private insurance companies need to make money more than Americans need access to health care.

But things have spiraled ever downward from there. It’s pointless to even attempt a cogent argument on this subject, when the other side of the debate are running around with their hair on fire, their leaders promoting obvious, absurd lies about “death panels” and… I don’t know, something about Hitler? Shamelessness does have its advantages, apparently. Certainly, no one has to ask Sarah Palin or Newt Gingrich if they have any shame, as was asked old Joe McCarthy, because the answer is obviously no. In a saner country, this “death panel” madness would be the end of Palin’s political ambitions forever. But then, a saner country would have tossed her into the ocean a year ago.

Anyway, it’s a foregone conclusion that whatever the hell gets through the Senate will be labeled Health Care Reform, or Health Insurance Reform, or just Health Reform as they’ve been calling it lately. And it’s equally clear that it will be pretty much useless, maybe even worse than useless. At best, it might solve the problem of impossible prices the same way Bush solved high drug prices: by making the government pay private businesses top dollar for it.

That’s how we compromise with industry now. As much as the Democrats are vilifying the insurance companies (and yes, they are villains in this story), the insurance companies will support the horribly mutilated bill that emerges for Obama to sign. Why? Because they will make more money than ever. Instead of a public option, people who can’t afford health insurance will be forced to buy private insurance, the poorest of us subsidized by the government. I suppose, if you have no insurance, that’s better than nothing. But it sure as hell isn’t much good.

To be fair, there are other good points, supposedly: A ban on rejecting people for preexisting conditions, for instance. But the public option, itself a paltry shadow of what a single-payer system could do for the country, is pretty much dead. It probably won’t survive the Senate process, even in a hollowed-out, meaningless form. Why? Because it would work. It would provide better service for lower costs. And the insurance people can’t have that.

The problem isn’t that the Democrats are spineless compromise fetishists, as many seem to think. Any smart negotiator knows that you start from a position your opponent deems unacceptable—in this case, a UK-style single-payer system, which would actually reduce costs dramatically and provide decent care for everyone.

Say Obama had started there. First of all, polls have consistently shown a majority of Americans support a single-payer system, as well as a majority of doctors. When politicians argue it’s not politically viable, they’re referring to staunch corporate opposition, not voter opposition, regardless of a few hundred aged, bewildered Glenn Beck drones shouting “keep your government hands off my Medicare” (actual quote). Secondly, even if it isn’t viable, starting from a single-payer position would ensure that any eventual compromise would be closer to a decent plan than what we’re going to wind up with, now that the Obama administration has started negotiating from an initial position of compromise. Instead, they’re compromising the compromise.

Why is this? No, it’s not that Democrats are wimps. They’re dive artists. Obama promised health care reform, but do he and his DLC inner circle actually want to weaken the stranglehold medical profiteers have on the public? Or do they just want to make a good show of losing the struggle?

The case for a single-payer system is rock solid and easy to explain. A single payer bill could be short enough to read in a few minutes—in fact, there is a single-payer bill floating around (doomed by the “too-liberal” names Kucinich-Conyers), and it’s a little over 4,000 words long.  Instead, we have a bill that’s over 1,000 pages long, written in typically inscrutable legalese, so dense and obscurantist that Republicans can assert nearly anything about it, from death panels to forcible sterilization, and say “read the bill!” with full knowledge that nobody will, nor could they understand it if they did.

Perhaps this explains Obama’s complete failure to actually describe the plan, aside from painfully vague references to “reform”. It’s suspicious that a group of people with the kind of supernatural message discipline they exhibited during the presidential campaign can’t muster any kind of reasonable explanation of what the plan is. Why is opposition to the health care bill rising? Not because conservatives don’t want it; they never did. It’s because liberals are starting to smell the bullshit, and recognize that what they’re trying to foist on us is not reform, but a massive boondoggle, just another way to funnel cash to donors. And make no mistake, all of the interested parties in this disgusting extortion racket we call a health care system have thrown mountains of cash at all of the important Democrats involved. Why, after all have pharmaceutical companies committed to spend hundreds of millions promoting the bill in a disturbing backroom deal with the White House, if it isn’t a simple boondoggle? Why has the AMA, a longstanding opponent of any form of socialized medicine, come out in favor of it?  Because, unfortunately, and despite the constant refrain from the paranoid rednecks, there’s nothing socialist about it. And it might be baffling, if you don’t understand where the real power is in the Party.

Put it this way: After eight years solid of Republicans proving themselves to be dishonest, corrupt and incompetent, what if the Democrats provided universal health coverage and paid for it by taxing the rich? I’ll tell you what: They wouldn’t lose another election for decades. It is actually in the party’s self-interest to do these things. And yet, they don’t. Why? Because there’s one thing even more important to politicians than votes, and that’s money.  Hell, even if Max Baucus loses his next election, his income level will skyrocket, thanks to the profiteers he’s protecting now.

Less than a year ago, Republicans were handed their walking papers, and the national consensus was that they were worse than worthless. And yet they are controlling this debate? With transparent lies and spooky stories—about the kind of health care system that the entire first world enjoys, and nobody seems to regret? Bullshit. Even with the help of Frank Luntz, the GOP’s talking points suck, and could be effectively rebutted—even by Harry Reid, let alone Obama. Health care rationing? Bureaucrats between you and your doctor? Life-saving procedures denied or delayed? All of these are already rampant in the private system. For every isolated horror story the Right can find in Canada or England, there are hundreds in your own neighborhood. And national health care never leaves individuals destitute or with impossible debt.

The Democrats seem to be throwing this thing on purpose. The public option is DOA and was probably always meant to be. And it’s not because they’re wussy or incompetent. It’s because they’re corrupt. It’s because all they are is the sock puppet on the left hand of corporate hegemony. Bribery is legal in this country—we call it campaign finance. That’s why we can’t have a single-payer system, and that’s why this bill devolving into yet another massive theft of taxpayer money was a foregone conclusion. In the end, maybe some poor people will be able to get treatment when they couldn’t before, but only in the weakest, most costly and corrupt way conceivable. And if that’s the only way we can do it, then I guess I’m for it.
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #4 on: 2009-11-02 13:11:33 »
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Contra Supra Redux.

"Scientists say" is not a valid basis for an argument unless the scientists in question are in field, current and competent in the area upon which they are commenting. That is not at all apparent from this article. In any case, both forms of the H1N1 vaccine have been provided to a large population with few significant adverse affects reported.

H1N1 is well distributed.
H1N1 is killing people
H1N1 is as transmissible as related avian and swine fles
As I observed when the first hysteria over H1N1 appeared, it has, so far, had a much lower mortality rate than conventional flue.

BUT

It is a characteristic of all virii, and avian, swine and the new hybrid flues are no exceptions, to undergo rapid in vivos evolution, where higher mortality strains could easily develop. Should this occur with H1N1 (as happened with the swine flue in 1918), due to its rapid transmission rate, it could infect most of the population in a very short period of time and this could result in very significant fatalities.

The likelihood of this can be reduced in two ways.
  • By immunizing the community, or at least a very significant portion of the community, drastically reducing the population of H1N1 - and a smaller population reduces the probability that it will evolve a newer more deadly strain.
  • Initial evolution will most likely result in any surviving evolved strain initially being sufficiently similar to the original for antibodies to the original to be triggered by immediate successors. This means that those immunised against the current flu might be protected against a close successor, reducing the chance of an evolved virus finding hosts in which to further evolve into strains where cross-immunity is unsuccessful at protecting the population.
In both cases, widespread immunization is extremely important in managing the pandemic to minimize fatalities.

Educated people recognise that they are best protected from transmissible diseases by living in a well immunised society. This means that even if a disease poses little or no risk to them, that they still have an onus to be immunised whenever they can act as a carrier unless the vaccination establishes an unduly significant risk to them (e.g. an allergy to a component of the vaccine). People who are not vaccinated benefit from the vaccinated population up to a calculatable percentage of the population, where a large enough host population exists to allow evolution of the disease to a form where existing antibodies do not protect people. Which is why alarmist anti-vaccination articles like this are extremely unhelpful.

By the way, our money is where our mouths are. Having assessed the risks, Hypatia is already immunized and we will all be as soon as there are more vaccines available.

« Last Edit: 2009-11-02 23:34:30 by Hermit » Report to moderator   Logged

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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #5 on: 2009-11-02 17:06:22 »
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Re the "Health Reform" Scandal (which might have done better on one of the threads covering the subject in Serious Business), it is a consequence of the dysfunctional political system in the USA which last time around only offered a Hobson's choice between a slightly less shitty smelling bunch of corporatists with working brains rather than the threatened hyper aggressive morons presented by the other half of the corporatists. Given these are the only two entities which the current rules give relevance, most people in the USA made a pragmatic choice to vote for the merely bad rather than the crew that had just finished demonstrating that it was utterly evil.

This version of three Card Monte with the Jack of a Single Payer System not even on the table makes it clear that both parties regard the voter's wishes as being irrelevant - those that can't be suckered forever are too few to count  - and makes it abundantly clear that given that it is organized by the same system, there is no point in voting in the USA, the outcome is as predetermined as in the electoral farce just brought to a merciful end in Afghanistan by simple declaring a winner. Which seems to have become an American tradition.

But as MoEnzyme said, it wasn't that anybody imagined that they were voting for a good government or that media-corporate-military  America was going to relinquish its death grip on the throats of the population of sheeples; just that they would be better than McPain and MsSame. He was right.

Apple pie anyone?
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #6 on: 2009-11-02 19:51:49 »
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Thx Hermit .... watching the media I thought I was the only one left on this planet that felt as you and Mo do. Blunderov WTF is a reasonable response to what I consider a life threatening "miss-take" from the media, they have just screwed this story up front to back.

Getting my H1N1 shot as soon as it is available, along with the regular flu shot; as I do every year.

Cheers

Fritz

PS: Missed you all .... HUGS !!!!

Sign of the times from Free Ottawa

From:  "aliciakeane" <aliwhe@rogers.com>
Date: Sun, 01 Nov 2009 16:20:38 -0000
To: <Kanata_Freestore@yahoogroups.ca>
Subject: [KF] OFFER: H1N1 Flu Shot Braclets (morgans Grant - Kanata



I have two h1n1 flu shot braclets for 12:10pm today, family members asked us to pick them up, and then backed out, hate to see them go to waste

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H1N1 vaccine for the one we are getting in Canada
http://www.emea.europa.eu/humandocs/PDFs/EPAR/pandemrix/emea-combined-h832en.pdf


« Last Edit: 2009-11-02 19:57:44 by Fritz » Report to moderator   Logged

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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #7 on: 2009-11-03 02:38:46 »
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[Blunderov] First, how wonderful to hear from Fritz again. Welcome back

Second, Mo; yes the visuals that I supplied for this thread are not "accurate". they were intended more for rhetorical effect. This could have been made more clear I concede. The point is that I think there is a tremedous storm in a teacup going on here.

Third, it was this that gave me particular pause from the original piece:

<snip>For example, Dr. Anthony Morris, a distinguished virologist and former Chief Vaccine Office at the U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA), states that “There is no evidence that any influenza vaccine thus far developed is effective in preventing or mitigating any attack of influenza” and that “The producers of these vaccines know they are worthless, but they go on selling them anyway.”

And in November 2007, the UK newspaper The Scotsman, made public warnings by the inventor of the “flu jab,” Dr. Graeme Laver. Dr. Laver was a major Australian scientist involved in the invention of a flu vaccine, in addition to playing a leading scientific role in the discovery of anti-flu drugs. He went on record as saying the vaccine he helped to create was ineffective and [that] natural infection with the flu was safer. “I have never been impressed with its efficacy,” said Dr. Laver.</snip>

These guys are well "in field" if the article is to be believed. So it seems that there are some hard questions to be answered. It also seems to me dubious that a vaccination which is already ineffective might turn out to be more effective against a later mutation of the virus.

I can see that the administration does not wish to be caught with it's pants down ala Katrina but I do think the question remains whether this medication is more effective as a political vaccination against possible future recriminations than it is as an actual prophylaxis against an actual disease.

I can buy that sometimes compulsory vaccinations are necessary for the greater good - if they work. That this one works seems very much open to doubt based on what I have read.

Love and hugs.


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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #8 on: 2009-11-03 13:08:22 »
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Welcome back to the realms of the posters Fritz.

Blunderov, a good source for flu vaccination stories is Sciencestage.com. Another is PhysOrg.

None of the concerns you are reflecting has appeared on either site, and, as shown in the following SciAm article, chosen for its explicatory value but representative of the consensus; in adult subjects, after a single dose of the current vaccine, the immune response to Swine Flu achieved is sufficiently strong to protect the subject from the disease and even inoculations from 33 years ago appear to remain efficacious against the pandemic form. An immune response is trivially testable and has been sufficiently confirmed by multiple sources to place allegations that flu shots are ineffective  into the realm of tinfoil conspiracy theory.



Single Vaccine Dose, Even One from 1976, Could Protect against the H1N1 Swine Flu

The "fiasco" of 1976, which saw the launch of a national vaccination program for an epidemic that never emerged, may be paying off today

Source: Scientific American
Authors: Christine Soares 
Dated: 2009-09-11

As the official flu season begins in the Northern Hemisphere, health officials are looking for ways to stretch limited supplies of vaccine against the novel H1N1 flu virus that leapt from swine to humans earlier this year. A suite of studies published in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) online Thursday and preliminary data from two clinical trials released today offer good news, particularly for the 43 million Americans vaccinated against "swine flu" in 1976.

In particular, a single dose of pandemic vaccine induces protective antibody levels in most adults. Data on children are expected in another two weeks, said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in a press conference today.

One of the NEJM studies also showed that many older Americans as well as recipients of the 1976 swine flu vaccine may already be protected against the new virus. In that study, researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that tests of serum taken from 1976 swine flu vaccine recipients showed a strong protective immune response against today's pandemic virus. The findings may help to explain why the virus sickens children and young adults more than older people, the authors wrote. The preexisting immunity may also prime 1976 vaccinees to respond vigorously to the new pandemic vaccine.

"It would certainly be something very interesting to look at," says Jackie Katz, senior author of the study. "That's why we did these studies originally, to help inform the public health response."

Adults appear protected

Since the new H1N1 virus emerged earlier this year, health officials have noted how it has disproportionately struck children and young adults and conspicuously spared older people worldwide. The disparity is most dramatic in the U.S.: 79 percent of laboratory-confirmed cases have been in people under 30 years old, whereas only two percent of cases have been in adults over 60. The U.S. median age of pandemic infections so far is 12, but somewhat higher in other countries. The median age of confirmed cases in Australia is 21, for example.

Since May, Katz, who is chief of the CDC National Influenza Division's Immunology and Pathogenesis Branch, has been testing stored serum samples to look for existing immunity to the new virus in the U.S. population. Her group's latest report shows that serum from adults born before 1930, including survivors of the 1918 pandemic, possesses antibodies that recognize and respond powerfully to the novel H1N1 virus.

With an antibody concentration of 40 or more considered protective (immunologists describe antibody responses in terms of serum dilution ratios, such as 1:40), the tests showed that 100 percent of subjects born between 1910 and 1929 mounted antibody levels of 80 or more. Only 34 percent of subjects born before 1950 mounted comparable levels, suggesting that exposure to the 1918 pandemic virus or its immediate descendents in the 1920s and 1930s conferred the strongest protection against the new flu.

The original swine flu

The CDC group also started over the summer to test 83 samples of serum drawn in 1976 from adults who received a single dose of the swine flu vaccine as well as a handful of samples from children who got the 1976 vaccine. The study found that the serum from 52 (63 percent) of the adult subjects produced antibody levels of 160 or more when exposed to the novel H1N1 virus. That number was nearly as many (59) of those whose serum demonstrated a strong response when exposed to the 1976 swine flu itself.

The NEJM report notes that a Japanese study recently reported finding protective antibody responses against the novel H1N1 virus in Japanese adults exposed to the 1918 pandemic virus, but not in subjects born after 1920. Serum from older Europeans tested by the CDC also showed lower response levels than the U.S. samples, possibly indicating a greater level of protection among Americans from the 1976 vaccine, which was given only in the U.S.

The study also confirmed previous work showing that infection with the modern seasonal H1N1 virus or exposure to seasonal vaccines in the past 20 years did not confer protection against the pandemic version of H1N1.

Family connection

The genealogy of the H1N1 virus family would explain why exposure to a swine lineage via the 1976 vaccine or to older human lineages offers cross-protection against the new strain. The parent of all H1N1 flu viruses, the virus that caused the pandemic of 1918–1919, jumped into the human population from some as yet unknown source and wrought worldwide havoc for two years, then settled down with considerably less virulence to become the circulating human seasonal flu strain for nearly 40 years. Sometime around 1920, humans introduced it to pigs, and that swine H1N1 lineage remained largely unchanged until the 1990s. The 1976 swine flu strain and early human H1N1 strains are therefore very close siblings.

Circulating human H1N1 disappeared in 1957 and only reemerged in 1977. Since then it has evolved sufficiently so that the modern seasonal H1N1 is more of a distant cousin to the older strains.

Although the new virus contains pieces from a variety of human and animal flu lineages, it retains the hemagglutinin protein—the H1—from the classical swine strain. Hemagglutinin is a viral protein that enables the flu virus to enter host cells. Because the protein is on the surface of the viral particles, it is a primary target for immune system cells and antibodies to recognize the viruses. Genetic analyses of the new virus's H1 protein and the classical swine H1 show them to be nearly identical.

Booster shots

"Basically, it's a 1931-like swine virus," says Brian Murphy, co-chief of the respiratory viruses laboratory at NIAID. Murphy supplied most of the 1976 serum samples used in Katz's study. He retrieved them once he learned of the genetic similarity between the new swine flu and classical swine virus. "We had them in our repository," he recalls of the samples taken from NIAID workers in 1976, "because we were doing a variety of experimental studies at the time. We used the licensed vaccine to immunize workers in the lab, to make sure people working with the virus had been immunized, and we obtained sera pre- and post-vaccination to make sure they had a satisfactory response."

Many of the lab workers showed a "tremendously vigorous" antibody response to the 1976 vaccine at the time, Murphy recalls. "We really don't know if people who had good titers [antibody levels] then [also] have them now, but I presume they would," or at least a good percentage of them would, he says. That presumption leads Murphy to conclude that when it comes to the pandemic H1N1 virus, "I would say, yes, there will be resistance in some percentage of those 40 million subjects."

Katz also cautions that the serum samples taken from 1976 vaccinees shortly after being vaccinated may not represent the level of response those same subjects would muster 33 years later. On the other hand, she adds, "As was observed in both 1976 and 1978 H1N1 vaccine clinical studies, individuals primed by prior exposure to H1N1 viruses through infection or vaccination made an antibody response to the new H1N1 vaccines after one dose."

If previous exposure to older H1N1 lineages primed 1976 vaccinees to produce good immune activity after a single dose of vaccine, then priming by the 1976 vaccine may yield a robust response to the new pandemic vaccine following a single dose, Katz acknowledges. "I think hopefully that information is being gathered and will be very interesting to see." The preliminary U.S. trial results released today did not examine trial subjects’ prior vaccine history or break down responses by age to determine possible preexisting immunity.

Stretching the vaccine supply

Pandemic planners had expected individuals to require two doses of vaccine in the fall, but if a significant portion of the population requires only one dose, vaccine supplies could be stretched. In the U.S. trials of two vaccines made by Sanofi Pasteur and CSL Limited, more than half of adults over 65 showed a strong immune response to a single vaccine dose, and 80 percent to 96 percent of adults between 18 and 64 mounted a robust response. “This is good news,” said Health and Human Services director Kathleen Sebelius at today's press conference, “but there is still critical research going on. We will assess the data further and make critical distribution decisions.”

CDC has already released updated recommendations for vaccine distribution, urging health care workers to concentrate on providing a single vaccine dose to at-risk groups and not to hold back vaccine supplies in order to provide a second dose to each individual.

The two other flu vaccine studies published in yesterday's NEJM also described responses to a single vaccine dose. An Australian test of a novel H1N1 vaccine showed that a single dose, containing an amount of virus antigen typical of seasonal flu vaccines, produced protective levels of antibodies in 96.7 percent of trial subjects.

Meanwhile, a U.K. trial of a pandemic vaccine containing MF59, an immunity-boosting vaccine additive that is approved in Europe, produced protective responses with half the usual amount of virus antigen in three quarters of trial subjects. Two doses of the adjuvanted vaccine generated protective antibody levels in more than 90 percent of the subjects.

Earlier this summer, estimates of this year's death toll from the H1N1 strain reached into the tens of thousands. This week's good news about vaccination could go a long way to cut that number sharply.
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #9 on: 2009-11-03 15:06:26 »
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In Toronto SARS a few years ago indicated some shortcomings in our social coping skills and H1N1 is under scoring more; not the least of which is political self interest and corporate greed.

That said, the science I am reading and discussions with doctors is that worst case the vaccines are 50% effective in prevention and then a whole range of reducing the severity since the immune system has been tuned up.

Issues raised are with the 'adjuvant' used inthe vaccine, again the media bungled that story since it is simply an additive; salts or lipids to get the immune system to put on a stronger showing.

Then screams of horror because of the preservative. It is a mercury derivative (Thiomersal (INN) (C9H9HgNaO2S), or sodium ethylmercurithiosalicylathat ) and has been used for decades . My understanding is most tuna fish sandwich's have 10 times the mercury in them from the tuna.

If I can sort all this out in a Saturday afternoon on the web and a few calls to medical practitioners, WTF is the media doing, clearly they hold their fellow citizens in contempt.

Cheers

Fritz


Source: Virology Blog
Author: Vincent Racaniello
Date: 21 October 2009

Severe cases of pandemic influenza

flu-pediatric-deathsThe World Health Organization recently convened a meeting of 100 clinicians, scientists, and public health professionals to discuss the clinical features of pandemic influenza. They concluded that the vast majority of infections with the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus were uncomplicated and are followed by full recovery within 7 days. However, some patients, including children, develop severe, progressive fatal pneumonia. Should we be worried about this pattern of infection?



According to WHO:

    Concern is now focused on the clinical course and management of small subsets of patients who rapidly develop very severe progressive pneumonia. Treatment of these patients is difficult and demanding, strongly suggesting that emergency rooms and intensive care units will experience the heaviest burden of patient care during the pandemic. Primary viral pneumonia is the most common finding in severe cases and a frequent cause of death. Secondary bacterial infections have been found in approximately 30% of fatal cases. Respiratory failure and refractory shock have been the most common causes of death.

The risk of severe illness is highest among pregnant women, children less than 2 years of age, and individuals with chronic lung disease. In the US, 86 children under 18 years of age have died from H1N1 influenza infection. This number is unusually high at this early point in the influenza season, and will likely rise as the number of infections increase. Anne Schuchat of CDC has said that “this is a very brisk number, usually in a whole season that lasts from…September all the way to May, you would only have about 40 or 50 deaths so in just one month’s time we’ve had that many.”

Why do some patients develop progressive pneumonia, and why are there so many fatalities in children? There isn’t enough information to answer these questions, but here is my virological perspective. One factor is the unusual genetic makeup of the virus. The results of a number of studies in ferrets, mice, and primates have shown that the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus replicates better than seasonal strains in respiratory tissues, including the lung. One way to understand the basis for this difference is to produce reassortants of the 2009 H1N1 and seasonal H1N1 strains with one or more genomic RNAs exchanged. Does the swine-derived HA of the pandemic H1N1 strain play a role in virulence? Then put the RNA segment for this HA into a seasonal H1N1 virus and determine the effect in ferrets. Such experiments are not always definitive but always worth doing. I’m still not sure that the animal results are predictive of what happens in humans. After all, in all the ferrets and mice inoculated, the pandemic H1N1 strain causes more severe disease. That simply is not the case in humans; severe disease is only seen in rare cases.

Another factor is population immunity. The HA of the 2009 H1N1 virus is swine-derived; we have never had such extensive spread of a swine HA-bearing influenza virus in humans (the 1976 H1N1 swine virus never got out of Fort Dix). The H1N1 virus probably entered humans and pigs around 1918, then evolved independently in both species. The H1N1 virus has circulated in pigs from 1918 to the present. Transmission of the H1N1 virus in humans stopped in 1957 when the virus was replaced by the H2N2 strain. But the 1957 human H1N1 strain, which was reintroduced into people in 1977, is only distantly related to the 2009 swine-origin H1N1. If you were born before 1950, you have some protection against infection with the 2009 H1N1 strain. This factor may contribute to the susceptibility of the pediatric population to severe infection.

The increased risk of pregnant women for developing severe influenza is well known but poorly understood. Pregnant women are in general more susceptible to infectious disease than non-pregnant woman. Hepatitis A, B, and E are more lethal, and paralytic poliomyelitis was more common, in pregnant women than in others. One explanation is that hormonal differences affect immune responses, but the specific mechanism is obscure.

The 2009 influenza H1N1 strain clearly behaves differently than seasonal strains in certain populations. The papers explaining why have yet to be published, but when they do emerge I’ll be explaining them here.

Itoh Y, Shinya K, Kiso M, Watanabe T, Sakoda Y, Hatta M, Muramoto Y, Tamura D, Sakai-Tagawa Y, Noda T, Sakabe S, Imai M, Hatta Y, Watanabe S, Li C, Yamada S, Fujii K, Murakami S, Imai H, Kakugawa S, Ito M, Takano R, Iwatsuki-Horimoto K, Shimojima M, Horimoto T, Goto H, Takahashi K, Makino A, Ishigaki H, Nakayama M, Okamatsu M, Takahashi K, Warshauer D, Shult PA, Saito R, Suzuki H, Furuta Y, Yamashita M, Mitamura K, Nakano K, Nakamura M, Brockman-Schneider R, Mitamura H, Yamazaki M, Sugaya N, Suresh M, Ozawa M, Neumann G, Gern J, Kida H, Ogasawara K, & Kawaoka Y (2009). In vitro and in vivo characterization of new swine-origin H1N1 influenza viruses. Nature, 460 (7258), 1021-5 PMID: 19672242

Maines TR, Jayaraman A, Belser JA, Wadford DA, Pappas C, Zeng H, Gustin KM, Pearce MB, Viswanathan K, Shriver ZH, Raman R, Cox NJ, Sasisekharan R, Katz JM, & Tumpey TM (2009). Transmission and pathogenesis of swine-origin 2009 A(H1N1) influenza viruses in ferrets and mice. Science (New York, N.Y.), 325 (5939), 484-7 PMID: 19574347

Munster VJ, de Wit E, van den Brand JM, Herfst S, Schrauwen EJ, Bestebroer TM, van de Vijver D, Boucher CA, Koopmans M, Rimmelzwaan GF, Kuiken T, Osterhaus AD, & Fouchier RA (2009). Pathogenesis and transmission of swine-origin 2009 A(H1N1) influenza virus in ferrets. Science (New York, N.Y.), 325 (5939), 481-3 PMID: 19574348
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« Reply #10 on: 2009-11-06 18:33:05 »
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[Fritz] "Just the facts Mam, Just the Facts". Site is update constantly

Worldwide H1N1 (Swine Flu) Infection Data

http://www.flucount.org/

End Of Day Summary for Monday, November 2, 2009 (FluCount.org): During the past week, a total of 535 new swine flu-related deaths were reported across 51 nations, an average of 76.4 deaths per day. Excluding Brazil (who reported over 700 deaths last week and none this week), this week's total of 535 deaths represents a 49% increase over the number of deaths last week.

The United States suffered their worst week yet, with reports of 197 new H1N1 deaths in 38 states and Puerto Rico, over the course of 7 days - an increase of 26.3% over the number of deaths last week. Vermont, the final state to confirm a swine flu death, ultimately joined the other 49 states. Fatalities were widespread, with only 12 states not reporting any new deaths. Death reports came in from the following states: AZ (18), TX (18), CA (16), FL (10), AL (9), NY ( 8 ), SD (7), IL (6), LA (6), NC (6), NM (6), NV (6), OK (6), WA (6), CO (5), KS (5), OR (5), WI (5), IN(4), MI (4), PA (4), SC (4), UT (4), KY (3), MD (3), WY (3), CT (2), IA (2), ID (2), MN (2), NJ (2), RI (2), DE (1), GA (1), MA (1), NE (1), VT (1), WV (1), PR (2).

Elsewhere, 40 nations continue to add swine flu deaths to their count. Mexico reported 56 new deaths, 10% more than the week before. India confirmed 28 new deaths this week, representing a 12.5% decline compared to the week before. South Korea confirmed 15 new deaths, while Saudi Arabia confirmed 23 new deaths - an increase in total number of deaths of 60% and 59% respectively. Canada announced 12 new deaths, while 10 new deaths were confirmed in Italy (+250%), Japan (+29%), Colombia (+8%), and the United Kingdom (+8%). Additional deaths were reported in: Spain (9), Argentina ( 8 ), Kuwait (7), Thailand (6), France (6), Iran (6), Israel (5), Guatemala (5), Ecuador (5), Syria (5), China (4), Vietnam (4), Netherlands (4), Germany (3), Norway (3), Hong Kong (3), Yemen (3), Bulgaria (3), Egypt (3), Jordan (2), Portugal (2), Venezuela (2), Honduras (2), Belgium (2), Taiwan (1), Oman (1), Lebanon (1), Qatar (1), Ireland (1), Cambodia (1), Australia (1).

Nine nations reported their very first swine flu deaths: Ukraine (22), Russia (12), Turkey (9), Mongolia (6), São Tomé & Príncipe (2), Afghanistan (1), Croatia (1), Moldova (1), and Finland (1).

New To List: Tajikistan and Nigeria each announced their first positive H1N1 infection.

Worldwide H1N1 (Swine Flu) Infection Data
Summary of Statistics

Official US Total:
(According to CDC)   44555 cases, 1365 deaths
Unofficial US Total:
(Other Reliable Sources)   75012 cases, 1381 deaths
Worldwide Total:
(Various Reliable Sources)   601376 cases, 7529 deaths
Most Infected States:
(According to CDC)   Wisconsin: 6222 cases
Texas: 5151 cases
Illinois: 3404 cases
Most Infected Countries:
(Various Reliable Sources)   Mexico: 52067 cases
China (Mainland): 48748 cases
United States: 44555 cases
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #11 on: 2009-11-15 13:43:52 »
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Nearly 4000 Americans Die from H1N1

Source: foodconsumer.org
Authors: David Liu, Rachel Stockton (editing)
Dated: 2009-11-15

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has announced that the death toll from H1N1 may be four times higher than previously estimated.

The CDC earlier estimated 1,000 deaths associated with H1N1 flu.  However, since then the agency has been scrupulously analyzing data from each individual state.  Additionally, they have included deaths from flu-related complications, such as pneumonia and other bacterial infections.

Their analysis has revealed that H1N1 has infected 22 million people in the United States; eight million of whom are children, since April.  The virus and its complications have killed about 4,000 Americans, including 540 pediatric deaths. 

The CDC's Dr. Anne Schuchat calls these numbers alarming:  "I have already seen a larger number of deaths than we have had for several years - I do believe that pediatric death toll from this pandemic will be extensive and much greater than what we see with seasonal flu," she says.

Compared to other diseases, the risk of dying from H1N1 virus remains small. For children, the death risk is 540 out of 8,000,000.  Early data indicate that the majority of children who have died from H1N1 suffered from other underlying health conditions; a small proportion of children who died were apparently healthy. [ Hermit : Which is what anybody statistically literate has been determining since the first M<exico City data became available. ]

Federal Health officials say that even though the risk of dying from H1N1 is small, the number of deaths associated with flu-like illnesses and secondary infections are higher when compared to the data collected during the same period in past years. Also, unlike seasonal flu, H1N1 poses a higher risk of hospitalization in children, along with a higher mortality rate among the elderly.


At higher risk are those who have underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, weakened immunity and chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease.
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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #12 on: 2009-11-15 18:13:40 »
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[Blunderov] There seems to be doubt in some circles as to whether the vaccine, or variants thereof, is safe. There also seem to be concerns that the vaccines are especially dangerous to those who have pre-existing conditions which make the flu problematic anyway. Further concerns have been expressed that the overcrowding of medical facilities involved in a near useless (allegedly) mass exercise will aggravate matters.


Fifth "swine flu" vaccine death in Sweden - vaccinations still go ahead as planned!
http://www.whale.to/vaccine/fifth_swine_flu.html

[Bl.] It remains to be seen if the vaccine, or variants thereof, will be effective against any mutant strains which might arise. Let us hope that this does turn out to be the case.

(En passant, during the recent Tal memorial Chess Tournament in Moscow, Vasily Ivanchuk (2nd) wore a surgical mask during play. Magnus Carlsen (2nd) was reported to have been running a fever during most of the tournament. And there were rumours that Vladimir Kramnik (winner) had also been displaying symptoms. Ivanchuk is from the Ukraine.)



Ukraine flu death toll rises to 189
Global Research, November 15, 2009

RIA Novosti - 2009-11-12

KIEV, November 11 (RIA Novosti) - Ukraine's death toll from an epidemic of flu and respiratory illness has risen to 189 people, and reported cases have exceeded 1 million, the health ministry said in a press release late on Tuesday.

The epidemic was declared in Ukraine in late October, when the first confirmed swine flu cases were also reported. Sixty-seven people have since been confirmed as having the A/H1N1 virus, of whom 14 have died.

The western Lvov and Ivano-Frankovsk regions of the ex-Soviet nation, home to 46 million, have been the worst-hit by the epidemic.




British scientists testing Ukrainian 'super flu' that has killed 189 people
Global Research, November 15, 2009
Daily Mail


Global Research, November 15, 2009

Daily Mail 

British scientists are examining the strain of swine flu behind a deadly Ukrainian outbreak to see if the virus has mutated.

A total of 189 people have died and more than one million have been infected in the country.

Some doctors have likened the symptoms to those seen in many of the victims of the Spanish flu which caused millions of deaths world-wide after the World War One.

An unnamed doctor in western Ukraine told of the alarming effects of the virus.

He said: 'We have carried out post mortems on two victims and found their lungs are as black as charcoal.

'They look like they have been burned. It's terrifying.'

Neighbouring Poland has called on the EU to take action, fearing the mystery virus may spread westwards.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk has written to European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and the Swedish Prime Minister, Fredrik Reinfeldt, who holds the EU presidency.

The letter said: 'The character of this threat demands that rapid action be undertaken at the European Union level.'

Russia, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary and Romania have already launched health checks on Ukrainians entering their territory.

Slovakia has closed two of five border crossings.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has called in the World Health Organisation.

A team of specialists are carrying out tests in Kiev and Lviv in an effort to identify the virus.

President Yushchenko said: 'People are dying. The epidemic is killing doctors. This is absolutely inconceivable in the 21st Century.' 

In a TV interview, the President added: 'Unlike similar epidemics in other countries, three causes of serious viral infections came together simultaneously in Ukraine: two seasonal flus and the Californian flu.

'Virologists conclude that this combination of infections may produce an even more aggressive new virus as a result of mutation.' 

Four men and one woman have died from the flu in Lviv, said emergency hospital chief doctor Myron Borysevych.

Two of the dead patients were in the 22-35 age group, with two others over 60.

He diagnosed the disease as viral pneumonia. 

'We have sent the analyses to Kiev. We don't believe it's H1N1 swine flu. Neither do we know what kind of pneumonia it is.' 

Universities, schools and nurseries have been closed, public meetings have been banned and theatres shut.

The virus from the Ukraine is being tested at the Medical Research council labs in Mill Hill North London .

A spokesman said: 'We do not have a time scale for the results of the tests, although some preliminary results have been obtained. I cannot tell you what they are.

'We did not have enough of the virus samples so we will have to grow some more before we can come to a conclusive decision about its nature.'






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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #13 on: 2009-11-16 10:19:52 »
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[Blunderov] There seems to be doubt in some circles as to whether the vaccine, or variants thereof, is safe. There also seem to be concerns that the vaccines are especially dangerous to those who have pre-existing conditions which make the flu problematic anyway. Further concerns have been expressed that the overcrowding of medical facilities involved in a near useless (allegedly) mass exercise will aggravate matters.

[Hermit] Scepticism is always good - but only where it is founded. I will repeat, these stories are focused on entirely the wrong danger.

[Hermit] As I mentioned before, there are two aspects to the objections, evidence and opinions. The evidence invalidating the stories is strong and of two sorts. The primary evidence is that people who have received the appropriate immunizations against H1N1 develop sufficient antibodies against the virus to prevent an attack or to reduce the severity of the response if an attack is successful despite the inoculation. This is trivially testable in the laboratory. Secondary statistical evidence of the safety and efficiency of the vaccine is available and indisputable. Secondary evidence of the disease aetiology and carrier reservoirs in the form of epidemiology and morbidity data is compelling. Opinion also comes in two classes. Those in field and competent in virology, immunization and epidemiology who say that the vaccine is efficacious, safe and greatly improves mankind's chances of avoiding a massive death toll this year - and the rest. I wouldn't worry about the rest.

[Hermit] The world is very different from 1918. It has 5 times more humans living in much closer proximity and partly because of this, partly because of disease development and distribution and partly because of our much longer lives, far more humans have compromised immune systems. Genetic analysis of samples from infected people and cadavers shows that H1N1 is moderately dangerous, but highly infectious, and powerful reasons exist to conclude that it could easily migrate to forms exhibiting much higher lethality.  Which is why, while the best thing about the H1N1 vaccine is the speed with which it was developed, validated and deployed, the scariest thing is undoubtedly that the vaccines for conventional flue and swine flue are effectively unavailable to all but a tiny percentage of the population at present. Which suggests that the worst of the flue season will be over before enough vaccine  is available to protect the majority of the population - leaving a scary window of opportunity for viral evolution.

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Re:Obama Administration Launches Deceptive Swine Flu Propaganda Blitz
« Reply #14 on: 2009-11-16 17:13:49 »
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I now have had H1N1 and the seasonal Flu shots; and I am not dead yet. I am with Hermit on this issue. This is not to say the Political animals aren't running in self serve mode.

What I find most disconcerting, is the problems we are having sharing real data and useful information.

If H1N1 or another strain mutates to a more virulent strain the infrastructure is pre-stressed and will struggle to deal with the fallout . Health care workers are already over worked with the H1N1 programs and with the economic downturn most health facilities are limiting inventory to save costs were thay can.

The over used term a 'Perfect Storm' is on my mind.

Cheers

Fritz


H1N1's true toll not shown by death tally, picture may take months to come clear

Source: Canadian Press
Author Helen Branswell (CP) –
Date: 2009-11-16 

TORONTO — Are you confused by the H1N1 numbers? Wondering why public health officials are making such a fuss about a virus that has so far killed so few people?

You aren't alone.

After all, we're told seasonal flu kills between 4,000 to 8,000 Canadians and between 250,000 and 500,000 people worldwide each year. Yet as of late last week, seven months into this outbreak, H1N1 had killed 161 Canadians and an estimated 6,260 people around the globe.

Critics of Canada's pandemic response point to the discrepancy between those sets of numbers and question the full court press.

But the thing is, as tempting as it is to compare those two sets of figures and conclude that H1N1 is much ado about nada, you can't do it. Those two sets of numbers count different things, experts say.

"You might as well compare the number of flu deaths with the number of Subarus sold in Canada," says Jordan Ellenberg, an associate professor of mathematics at the University of Wisconsin who explained the problem in an article published online in Slate Magazine earlier this year.

"If you want to compare the number of confirmed deaths to seasonal flu to the number of confirmed deaths from H1N1, OK, you can do that," he says in an interview. "But what you can't do is compare the number of certified deaths on one side to the best estimate of the full number of deaths on the other side."

Confirmed H1N1 death tallies capture the blessedly few times someone who caught this bug died from it after testing positive for it. The seasonal flu numbers are estimates, mathematical calculations aimed at capturing all the deaths influenza had a hand in.

The frequent attempts to equate the two are driving Dr. Kumanan Wilson bonkers.

Wilson is an expert in public health policy as well as an internal medicine physician at the Ottawa Health Research Institute. He readily admits he never sees anyone die of seasonal flu - a common claim that drives infectious diseases experts crazy.

Wilson is, however, seeing the destructive power of this strain of influenza.

"Nobody has seen a flu season like this on the ground level," he says. "If you talk to any frontline worker, they've never seen anything like this. And we keep getting told this is nothing."

"Emergs (emergency departments) are filled. All the children's hospitals are filled. Family docs I talk to say 'Oh my God, I've never seen so many flu cases."'

Wilson says it is "disingenuous" to criticize the response to this pandemic by comparing the low death toll to the substantially higher estimates of seasonal flu deaths. "I feel it under plays the significance of this."

But what is the difference between counting confirmed flu deaths one by one and estimating seasonal flu death tolls? The answer lies in the way flu kills and the way statisticians try to capture that effect.

Influenza does kill some people directly. We see it sometimes with this strain of flu; some victims develop an aggressive and ultimately fatal viral pneumonia.

But generally that number is small. A 2007 study of looking at 10 years worth of influenza deaths in Canada reported that deaths directly attributed to flu made up only eight per cent of all influenza-related deaths in a given year.

In most cases, influenza contributes to or hastens death. A bout of flu can trigger a heart attack in someone with heart disease. But the cause of death is likely to be listed as a heart attack.

Other times flu weakens the immune system of say an 80 year old. Bacteria seize the opportunity and a pneumonia develops. The cause of death may be bacterial pneumonia, but the pneumonia wouldn't have occurred if the person hadn't caught the flu.

A lot of seasonal flu doesn't get captured in official reports of deaths and hospitalizations. Not everyone dies in hospital. Hospitals don't always test for influenza. And even if they do, if the test isn't done early enough in the infection, the test may come back negative.

The 2007 study, led by Dena Schanzer of the Public Health Agency of Canada, estimated there were on average 12.5 deaths attributable to flu for every certified flu death from 1990 to 1999.

Public health researchers come up with figures like that by plotting curves of annual flu outbreaks against what is known, from long-term study, about how many people die on average each week of the year. When you lay the two curves over each other, you see deaths rise when flu hits.

Some of the excess mortality, as it is called, may be due to other factors, like poor winter driving conditions. But some of the excess is due to influenza. And over the years, public health researchers have worked out ways to calculate the portion of those extra deaths for which flu is to blame.

"We try to isolate the amount that we can attribute to influenza, using our mathematical models," explains Dr. Jeff Kwong, of Toronto's Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences.

Some people question the tactic. But Ellenberg says it's a valid approach.

"If somebody gets in a car crash and they bring them to the hospital and they die, you would say 'Hey, that person was killed in a car crash,"' he explains. "And if somebody was like 'No, when they were in the car they were alive. They died of blood loss in the hospital," that would be a little ridiculous, right?"

Often, though, there can be considerable lag time between an outbreak and the attempts to quantify its impact. It takes time for vital statistics to be processed. Kwong says it may be 2011 or so before Canadian researchers can come up with a good estimate of what has happened this year with H1N1.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control decided not to wait.

Last week they released new estimates of the toll H1N1 has taken in the United States. Their calculations, the methods for which are explained on the CDC's website (http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/estimates-2009-h1n1.htm), nearly quadrupled their estimate of how many Americans have died from the virus. They now peg it at 3,900.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of the center for immunization and respiratory diseases, says the agency knew focusing on lab confirmed cases was painting a "very incomplete" picture of the problem.

Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. David Butler-Jones, doesn't think the discrepancy will be as big here. "No test will capture 100 per cent (of cases). But certainly we believe we're much closer to the actual number here in Canada."

But influenza expert Dr. Allison McGeer says she isn't sure how many cases are being missed. She knows the tests aren't sensitive enough to pick up all the cases. But are they missing 15 per cent or 35 per cent? She can't tell.

Harvard epidemiologist Marc Lipsitch, a modelling expert, isn't sure how much it matters at this point.

"If all this effort goes to save hundreds or a few thousand lives, that's still hundreds or a few thousand lives that have been saved," he says. "If these are preventable deaths, which I think is pretty clear many of them are, we should try to prevent them.

Copyright © 2009 The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.
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