2009 Influenza A(H1N1) 'Swine Flu' Outbreak: U.S. Responses to Global Human Cases [May 26, 2009] [open pdf - 935KB]
In April 2009, a novel influenza virus began to spread around the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) refers to the virus as Influenza A(H1N1). The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other Administration officials refer to it as 2009 H1N1 flu. Throughout this report, the virus is referred to as H1N1. Although H1N1 does not appear to be as lethal as H5N1 avian influenza, which reemerged in 2005, the virus is slightly more lethal than seasonal flu and it continues to spread. Researchers are not yet clear to what extent H1N1 transmission will continue spread or how virulent the virus will be ultimately. […] Investments that the United States and other stakeholders have made to prepare for a possible influenza pandemic, and to monitor the spread of other infectious diseases, have been applied to the most recent global response to H1N1. While health experts have made considerable gains against the disease, questions remain. Some health experts are concerned that poorer countries may not yet have the capacity to sufficiently monitor and respond to H1N1. Others warn that H1N1 transmission might accelerate in winter months. Questions still remain about whether the disease can change or reassort, particularly should outbreaks in countries simultaneously contending with H5N1 bird flu cases occur (such as Egypt, Vietnam, and Indonesia)."
CRS Report for Congress, R40588
United States. Department of State, Foreign Press Centers, Bureau of Public Affairs: http://www.fpc.state.gov/