ABSTRACT

Pandemic Influenza: How Worried Should We Be?   [open pdf - 73KB]

"Pandemic influenza is once again on the radar of the public health community. For most people, the destruction and upheaval caused by the 1918-19 flu pandemic is an obscure historical event, but the 2003 SARS epidemic and the smoldering H5N1 avian influenza epizootic in Asia have renewed interest in a flu pandemic and brought dire predictions of its imminent recurrence. At the same time, most of us in public health would like to avoid a repeat of 1976, when ominous forecasting about swine flu led to public anxiety, expenditure on mass vaccination, and embarrassment when the pandemic never materialized. So just how real a possibility is a worldwide crisis caused by a flu pandemic, and what can be done to prepare? Despite causing 36,000 deaths in a routine US winter, in the public consciousness flu remains an inaccurate name for the common cold and not something to be feared."

Author:
Publisher:
Date:
2005
Series:
Copyright:
2005 University of Washington School of Public Health and Community Medicine
Retrieved From:
Northwest Public Health: http://www.nwpublichealth.org/
Format:
pdf
Media Type:
application/pdf
Source:
Northwest Public Health (Fall/Winter 2005) v.22 no.5
URL:
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