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How the Bird Flu Could Turn into a Pandemic
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Sidenote: Hope you're finding this useful? I have always been curious about this matter. And when I found very little quality information about it, I decided to share a part of what I've learned about it - which is why this article came to be written. Read on. Should we be worried that the bird flu could turn into a pandemic? Worldwide only 165 people have been infected and about 88 have died. The people who became infected had close contact with infected birds. Currently it is not spread by human-to-human transmission. But scientists fear that it will turn into a form that can be easily spread person to person or mix with normal flu viruses to provide that human transmission. When that happens, the chances of a world bird flu pandemic will have greatly increased.
We have seen bird flu virus spread among poultry throughout Southeast Asia and is now moving towards the west with new cases being discovered in Turkey, Iran, Africa, Greece and now Italy. While everything is being done to stop the spread, it continues to spread to other parts of the globe. New outbreaks will continue to pop up. Migratory birds are carrying it into Europe, Africa, Russia, and throughout the Middle East. When new cases are confirmed in those countries we will know it is continuing to spread. The first cases of bird flu have now reached northern Africa. In African countries already devastated by HIV, poverty, famine, war and lack of health care it will infect the population at a much greater rate than other parts of the world. This will probably provide the greatest chance of the virus mutating into a form that can pass from person to person through human contact, coughs, etc. As more people become infected, the greater chance it will start to spread around the world. This is why the greatest chance of a bird flu pandemic will come not from Asia, where new outbreaks are being monitored very carefully, but from Africa.
In 1918 the Influenza started in Kansas and spread around the world within 9 months infecting millions and killing an estimated 40-50 million people. Today with increased population, more people living closer together in large cities and air travel, it could spread very quickly. One person traveling by air could infect dozens of other passengers, and those passengers would spread it to other travelers and other cities. A person coughing at a basketball game or concert. Another person coughing as they walk through the skyways to their office, leaving the virus on door handles as they go. Adults spreading it to children, who bring it to school, who bring it home. One "superspreader" could infect dozens of people.
Within weeks or months the flu has spread around the world. Emergency plans put in place may not be quick enough. Anti viral medication will take 6 months to get into production and delivered to those who need it. Planned regional stockpiles of antiviral medicine will quickly dwindle. Once the dominos start falling we will be under the full effects of a pandemic crisis.
Once human-to-human transmission has been confirmed any where in the world, we will have from one month to a year to prepare for a possible avian influenza pandemic. Those who are not prepared will be the hardest hit. Your best defense is to stay informed about bird flu and start preparing for a potential avian influenza pandemic now.
About the author:
To stay up to date on avian influenza, bird flu and the h5n1 virus visit The Bird Flu Index http://www.birdfluindex.com Find links to bird flu websites, official medical and government sites and full information about how the bird flu could turn into a global influenza pandemic. Search through the article archive for the latest bird flu articles. For the latest bird flu news visit The Pandemic Zone http://pandemiczone.blogspot.com