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News Reports for February 2, 2013

by: NewsDiary

Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 19:32:43 PM EST


Reminder: Please do not post whole articles, just snippets and links, and do not post articles from the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Thanks!

Argentina
• Remain hospitalized patients infected with a rare virus (translated) (Link)

Cambodia
• Cambodia Reports HPAI in Kong Pisei District  (Link)

China
•  Hong Kong: Black-headed Gull Tests Positive for H5N1 Virus  (Link)

India
• Karnataka: Woman dies of H1N1 (Link)

Indonesia
• Golkar Refuses Funding for Bird Flu Vaccine Plant (Link)
• Thousands Rooster Tails in Polewali Mandar Esophageal Dead Bird Flu (Link)

Israel
• Hospitals Struggle to Cope with Rising Swine Flu in Israel (Link)
• 2 swine flu patients hospitalized in serious condition (Link)

Taiwan
• Taiwan lifts ban on Saskatchewan poultry (Link)

United States
• MS: North Mississippi child is state's 1st pediatric flu death of season (Link)
• Flu Still Flexing Its Muscle in Western States  (Link)
• Flu attacking elderly at historically high rates  (Link)

General
• "The Virus Planet": Earth's Invisible World Would Reach Out 100-Million Light Years (Link)

Commentary
• Recombinomics: US Week 4 Pneumonia & Influenza Death (Link)


• H (Link)

NewsDiary :: News Reports for February 2, 2013

News for February 1, 2013 is here.


Thanks to all of the newshounds!
Special thanks to the newshound volunteers who translate international stories - thanks for keeping us all informed!

Other useful links:
WHO A(H1N1) Site
WHO H5N1 human case totals, last updated January 16, 2013
Charts and Graphs on H5N1 from WHO
Google Flu Trends
CDC Weekly Influenza Summary
Map of seasonal influenza in the U.S.
CIDPC (Canada) Weekly FluWatch
UK RCGP Weekly Data on Communicable and Respiratory Diseases
Flu Wiki

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Hospitals Struggle to Cope with Rising Swine Flu in Israel
Two more people were admitted Thursday to a hospital in Israel due to the H1N1 virus, also known as "swine flu." Two people have died.

Two more people have been admitted to a hospital in Israel due to the severity of symptoms from the H1N1 virus, also known as "swine flu." A man in his 50s and a four-year-old girl both contracted the virus and were admitted to Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon on Thursday, a spokesperson said.

The man is being treated in the respiratory intensive care unit, and the child is in care in the pediatric intensive care unit. Hospital authorities said, however, that the two cases were unrelated.  Both patients are listed in stable condition, the spokesperson said.

Four Israelis are currently hospitalized in critical condition as a result of the disease. They include a 32-year-old man at Soroka Medical Center in Be'er Sheva, a 50-year-old man at Haifa's Rambam Hospital, an 83-year-old woman and a 75-year-old man, both at Tel Aviv's Ichilov Hospital. Three of the four are patients who have chronic illnesses.

On Monday, a 28-year-old woman died of the disease at Soroka Hospital. The patient had arrived at the medical center in critical condition, and after persistent resuscitation attempts, medical personnel were forced to declare her death. She, too, had not received vaccination against the disease.

A three-year-old boy died of the disease two weeks ago at Schneider Children's Hospital in Petach Tikvah. The child had not received the flu vaccine, according to the medical report.

(Snip)

Landiado Hospital, also known as Sanz Medical Center, this week reported it was forced to transform its cafeteria into a makeshift ward with patient beds, as the hospital's census soared to more than 55 percent over full capacity.

Both Rambam Medical Center and Bnei Zion Hospital in Haifa reported that they, too, were at full capacity and were diverting patients internally from one department to the next as they struggled to care for the rising numbers of patients with the H1N1 virus who were arriving at their emergency rooms. Continued: http://www.israelnationalnews....

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


Israel: 2 swine flu patients hospitalized in serious condition
A man in his 40s (Snip) has been rushed to the Rambam Medical Center in serious condition after being diagnosed with swine flu. The hospital currently has two swine flu patients in its intensive care unit, who are anaesthetized and being given artificial respiration.

A 60-year-old man was hospitalized (Snip) in critical condition Thursday after contracting the disease. http://www.ynetnews.com/articl...  

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


[ Parent ]
India: Woman dies of H1N1 (Karnataka)
A woman died of H1N1 influenza at a private hospital in Manipal, Udupi district, Thursday evening.

Remandi Anthone D' Souza (27), (Snip) had returned home at Bastikaykini near Murdeshwar in the taluk. (Snip) she was infected with the fever on Janaury 12 and was admitted to a hospital in Kundapur on January 19 as her condition worsened.

(Snip) the family members shifted her to a hospital in Manipal on January 24, where the doctors diagnosed her with H1N1 influenza (Snip).

The woman, who was pregnant with her third baby, passed away on Thursday. http://www.deccanherald.com/co...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


US: North Mississippi child is state's 1st pediatric flu death of season
The state's first child death from flu this season has been recorded in north Mississippi, officials say.

The state Department of Health said that influenza death also is the first for a Mississippi child since the 2009-10 H1N1 Pandemic flu season. The child who died had chronic underlying health conditions, the Health Department said in a news release.

Officials say they cannot release the child's age because of privacy issues, but pediatric deaths are defined as deaths of those 18 and under. The child died Sunday in Memphis, and Mississippi's Department of Health was notified Thursday by the Shelby County, Tenn., Department of Health, said Mississippi Department of Health spokeswoman Liz Sharlot.

A total 11 Mississippi pediatric deaths have been recorded since pediatric flu deaths became reportable in Mississippi in 2007.

"We are still in the middle of our flu season in Mississippi, and if you have not gotten your flu shot, now is definitely the time to do so," State Epidemiologist Dr. Thomas Dobbs said in a news release. Continued: http://www.clarionledger.com/a...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


US Week 4 Pneumonia & Influenza Death Rate Dips To 9.4%
Recombinomics Commentary

The Pneumonia and Influenza (P&I) Death Rate graph ( http://www.recombinomics.com/N... )  includes the week 4 drop to 9.4% from 9.8% in week 3.  The week 4 rate is a full 2% above the epidemic threshold and is the second week in a row where the level was at least 2% above the threshold (Snip)  Moreover, the 9.4% keeps the peak at the highest level since the 2003-04 season.  The severity of the 2003-04 season led to the regulations requiring reporting of lab confirmed pediatric deaths.

(Snip)  Activity increased in the west, and the Pacific region had the highest P&I rate, in contrast to week 3, when the highest region was New England.

There were 8 more pediatric flu deaths reported in week 4 FluView, but at least 10 additional cases had been reported in state reports, and additional confirmed or probable raised the week 4 FluView total from 45 to 62. http://www.recombinomics.com/N...

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


Arcentina: Remain hospitalized patients infected with a rare virus
Translated

LA PLATA. - As the Hospital Nuestra Señora del Carmen in Carmen de Areco, minimal attention was conducting on call for emergencies, despite fears of neighbors to approach the place, epidemiologists awaiting the results of studies conducted to towards infected people know the origin of the illness that forced the closure of the hospital.

Last Wednesday nine medical-two patients were infected in the Hospital Nuestra Señora del Carmen with a virus that causes symptoms similar to the flu, but so far has not been determined.

Spokesmen for the Ministry of Health's Office informed the nation that in the next few hours would be known Malbrán Institute report. Through a statement, the Foreign Secretary of Health and Health Research, Lazovski Jaime explained that "being carried out analyzes to detect whether it is a virus, bacteria or fungi causing this infection and at the time does not seem to be a case of poisoning. "

The provincial director of Preventive Medicine, Ministry of Health of the province, Luis Crovetto, also said that if not detected any biological agent that would have caused this nosocomial infection samples were sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States (CDC).

Meanwhile, concern grew among hospital workers about the health of a companion. "We got the part of the two patients who are hospitalized in intensive care (Snip) and it was very encouraging picture. Whilst one is stable, not given much expectation on the another girl", said Mariela Iturralde, technical operator of the hospital statistics, the NATION.

The other four people hospitalized were stable and his condition had worsened not from the time they were derived, Crovetto said.

Although the health center remains closed, yesterday began to normalize the emergency call service, albeit minimal. The implementation of care give supply, as workers counted because there were not so far many elements were required emergency or high complexity. "We must also say that people prefer not addressed. (Snip).

To start with disinfection operatives, the Ministry of Health of Buenos Aires sent a team of epidemiologists zoonoses and Biological Institute to tour the hospital facilities. Crovetto said "intensive care area is closed and the rest of the hospital is sanitized exhaustively. The idea is that if Tuesday are given biosafety levels go, slowly, by operating the other sectors of hospital, except intensive care, where the infection originated. "

Although the symptoms are similar to those of influenza A (but was ruled not to be the origin of the mysterious infection), became visible about 20 days ago, the health professionals at the hospital in Carmen de Areco reported that hospital authorities "made us come to work well and everything worked normally. were all very nervous," said Iturralde. http://www.lanacion.com.ar/155...  

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


This is the 2nd article I have found on this.
I posted one in yesterday's news diary titled:

Argentina - "Concern at a hospital in Carmen de Areco by a virus which affected 11 people"  http://www.newfluwiki2.com/sho...

If I'm reading this correctly, there are 6 people infected of which 2 are medical personal who worked in intensive care.

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


[ Parent ]
Sorry....
I meant to write "there are 6 people hospitalized". Evidently, there have been a total of 11 people with symptoms. I haven't been able to find out how many of those 11 are medical personnel. It mentions 2 medical personnel as being in intensive care in the hospital. The other 4 in the hosital may or may not be medical personnel. I can't tell you where the other 5 people are.

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. --Unknown

     


[ Parent ]
that could be serious...
Depending on how well IC staff protect themselves (and most do take precautions)this could mean it's highly infectious! Or infectious in a way that they don't protect against. Either way, concerning - thanks for catching it, Carol!

[ Parent ]
PS - the article, not the illness LOL


[ Parent ]
Thanks for finding these articles, Carol!
It's not even flu season in Argentina!

[ Parent ]
Indoesia: Golkar Refuses Funding for Bird Flu Vaccine Plant
February 02, 2013

Golkar is the latest political party to reject a government proposal for funding to finish construction of a stalled bird flu vaccine plant, citing the corruption allegations swirling around the initial allocation.

"The decision of the Golkar members of the House of Representatives is to reject any effort to continue this project," veteran party legislator Poempida Hidayatulloh said on Friday.

Poempida, who serves on House Commission IX overseeing health affairs, said the party based its decision on the fact that the preliminary phase of the project was mired in graft. An audit of the initial Rp 800 billion ($82.4 million) disbursement for the project by the Supreme Audit Agency (BPK) found that up to Rp 600 billion was lost as a result of embezzlement, markups and bid-rigging.

Agung Laksono, the coordinating minister for people's welfare and a Golkar stalwart, previously said the government needed additional funding to produce vaccines in an effort to tackle a rising number bird flu cases nationwide.

Health Minister Nafsiah Mboi warned late last year that her office had identified a new strain of the avian influenza virus that was found to attack ducks that were immune to the more common strain.

Golkar's opposition to the additional Rp 1.2 trillion in funding for the project comes on the back of a similar position by the Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), which said the corruption scandal made it impossible to justify the extra funding.

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com...

United we stand: Divided we fall
www.flunewsnetwork.com


LOL! I can spell Indonesia! n/t


United we stand: Divided we fall
www.flunewsnetwork.com


[ Parent ]
Hong Kong: Black-headed Gull Tests Positive for H5N1 Virus
http://www.thepoultrysite.com/...

01 February 2013
HONG KONG - A spokesman for the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) said today (1 February) that a black-headed gull found in Tuen Mun last week was confirmed to be H5N1-positive after a series of laboratory tests.
The sick black-headed gull was found and collected at Mouse Island Children's Playground, Hoi Wing Road, Tuen Mun, on 25 January. The bird died the next day. The black-headed gull is a common winter visitor.

The AFCD will continue to conduct inspections of poultry farms to ensure that proper precautions against avian influenza have been implemented.

[snip]


Cambodia Reports HPAI in Kong Pisei District
http://www.thepoultrysite.com/...

01 February 2013

CAMBODIA - The Cambodian veterinary authorities have reported an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza at a village in Kong Pisei District.

The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) received follow-up report no. 1 on 30 January. The causal agent has been identified as highly pathogenic avian influenza virus, serotype H5N1. The affected population consists of backyard poultry.

Out of 503 susceptible birds, 67 cases have been identified. The remaining 436 birds were destroyed.  


Taiwan lifts ban on Saskatchewan poultry
http://www.ipolitics.ca/2013/0...

By Canadian Press | Feb 1, 2013 12:06 pm | 0 Comments
OTTAWA - Saskatchewan poultry producers can export to Taiwan for the first time since an avian flu outbreak more than five years ago.

Taiwanese authorities have lifted a ban that was imposed on Saskatchewan poultry and poultry products in 2007.

That's when a highly pathogenic strain of avian flu was found in Saskatchewan on a farm that produced hatching eggs for broiler chickens.

Saskatchewan has been recognized as flu-free since 2008 based on the World Organisation for Animal Health requirements.

[snip]


Taiwan lifts ban on Saskatchewan poultry
http://www.ipolitics.ca/2013/0...

By Canadian Press | Feb 1, 2013 12:06 pm | 0 Comments
OTTAWA - Saskatchewan poultry producers can export to Taiwan for the first time since an avian flu outbreak more than five years ago.

Taiwanese authorities have lifted a ban that was imposed on Saskatchewan poultry and poultry products in 2007.

That's when a highly pathogenic strain of avian flu was found in Saskatchewan on a farm that produced hatching eggs for broiler chickens.

Saskatchewan has been recognized as flu-free since 2008 based on the World Organisation for Animal Health requirements.

[snip]


"The Virus Planet" -- Earth's Invisible World Would Reach Out 100-Million Light Years
http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_...

[Note: this is merely the first four paragraphs of a truly excellent article! Don't miss reading the entire article!]

February 02, 2013

In the invisible, parallel world of Earth's they kill half the bacteria in the ocean every day, and invade a microbe host 10 trillion times a second around the world.  There are 10 billion trillion, trillion viruses inhabiting Planet Earth, which is more stars than are in the Universe -- stacked end to end, they would reach out 100 million light years.

Over tens, hundreds and millions years, our ancestors have been picking up retroviruses (HIV is a retrovirus) that reproduce by taking their genetic material and inserting it into our own chromosomes. There are probably about 100,000 elements in the human genome that you can trace to a virus ancestor. They make up about 8 percent of our genome, and genes that encode proteins only make up 1.2 percent of our genome making us more virus than human.
>Occasionally, a retrovirus will end up in a sperm cell or an egg and insert its genes there, which then may give rise to a new organism, a new animal, a new person where every cell in that body has got that virus.

In 2009, MIT researchers have explained why two mutations in the H1N1 avian flu virus were critical for viral transmission in humans during the 1918 pandemic outbreak that killed at least 50 million people -- believed more than that taken by the Black Death, and higher than the number killed in World War I.

The 1918 flu pandemic -- commonly known as the Spanish flu -- was an influenza pandemic that started in the United States, appeared in West Africa and France and then spread to nearly every part of the globe in three waves lasting from March 1918 to June 1920, spreading to the Arctic and remote Pacific islands. It was caused by an unusually severe and deadly Influenza A virus strain of subtype H1N1.
[continued at link]


Thousands Rooster Tails in Polewali Mandar Esophageal Dead Bird Flu
Saturday, February 2, 2013
http://www.108csr.com/default/...
West Sulawesi, Indonesia:  Thousands of rooster tails in Polewali Mandar, West Sulawesi died suddenly.  Based on the local Animal Husbandry Department, officers test that checks to make sure the cage of chickens and ducks that died are confirmed positive for bird flu or H5N1 variant 232.  Currently, officers and citizens continue to the mass destruction to isolate the spread of the deadly virus.  Even residents are asked to voluntarily destroy cattle infected with bird flu that belong to them in order to carry out culling thousands of birds.  Understandably the government can not give damages whatsoever against the cage breeder bird flu.

To this day, the officer noted at least four districts in Polewali Mandar Wonomulyo ie, Limboro, Andreapi and Binuang that are stated positive bird flu.  On average Polewali Mandar poultry farmers suffered losses of tails from 4000 to 10,000 chickens that died before their property could be sold to the market.  Generally farmers suffered losses of tens of millions of dollars.  Officers from the Department of Animal Husbandry PDSR Polewali Mandar, Ramli said that over the past week officers continue to educate about bird flu prevention.  The cage breeders confirmed those with bird flu were also asked to commit genocide voluntarily.

"It's been four sub-contracted the bird flu and we are heavily culling and disseminating prevention," said Ramli, Department of Animal Husbandry Officer Polewali Mandar, Saturday (02/03/2013).

Bird flu virus continues to spread in Polewali Mandar though it is thought to have come from Java.  At first farmers in the District Wonomulyo carried seeds of ducks Java already suspected of bird flu.  In a short time, the virus is suspected to have spread to other ducks to attack thousands of other birds.  


"I am opposed to any form of tyranny over the mind of man."  Thomas Jefferson


Flu Still Flexing Its Muscle in Western States
http://www.webmd.com/cold-and-...

By Robert Lowes
Medscape Medical News

Feb. 1, 2013 -- The flu continues to wane on a nationwide basis, but don't tell that to residents of the western United States.

Of the 24 states reporting high levels of flu-like illness, 19 were west of the Mississippi River for the week ending Jan. 26, according to the latest "Flu View" report from the CDC.

In the last week of 2012, 18 of the 29 states reporting high flu-like activity levels lay east of the Mississippi.

This east-to-west migration of influenza is a long-standing pattern, according to the CDC.

Although the percentage of doctor visits for suspected flu was declining throughout most of the country, it was rising steeply in in eight Western states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington. In the Midwestern states of Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska, the flu-like illness crept up slightly.

Nationwide, the proportion of people going to the doctor for suspected flu was 4.2%, down slightly from the previous week. This rate has been decreasing since it reached 5.6% in the last week of 2012.

[continued at link]


Flu attacking elderly at historically high rates
A WEEKLY LOOK AT INFLUENZA ACROSS THE USA

[MAP: The level of flu activity -- high, moderate, low or minimal -- is an indication of what percentage of outpatient visits in a state are for a flulike illness, compared with months when there is no flu. A map for the week ending Jan. 26.]

Source: Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
By Kevin A. Kepple and Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY
Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY12:33p.m. EST February 2, 2013

There are currently three main flu strains circulating nationwide, with H3N2 the predominant one. It appears to be especially dangerous for the elderly.

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
Number of hospitalizations and deaths expected to rise
Forty-five children have died from flu
Flu is hitting hard in the west, though waning elsewhere
Though the flu is beginning to wane nationally, it is sickening and killing seniors at rates "higher than we've ever seen,"
a CDC flu expert said Friday.

Last week, the number of people older than 65 who died from a laboratory-confirmed case of influenza was 116 per 100,000. "We've kept rates since 2005 and we have never seen a rate this high," said Michael Jhung, an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "The highest we've ever seen in was 90 per 100,000."

He expects those numbers to go higher still. Hospitalization - and, in some cases, death - follows several weeks after a person first gets sick.

"We've still got several weeks of the season yet, so it's going to be much worse" before it's over, he said. "The deaths are still accumulating."

[continued at link]


Link to story...
...is here.

[ Parent ]
Flu attacking elderly at historically high rates
A WEEKLY LOOK AT INFLUENZA ACROSS THE USA

[MAP: The level of flu activity -- high, moderate, low or minimal -- is an indication of what percentage of outpatient visits in a state are for a flulike illness, compared with months when there is no flu. A map for the week ending Jan. 26.]

Source: Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
By Kevin A. Kepple and Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY
Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY12:33p.m. EST February 2, 2013

There are currently three main flu strains circulating nationwide, with H3N2 the predominant one. It appears to be especially dangerous for the elderly.

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
Number of hospitalizations and deaths expected to rise
Forty-five children have died from flu
Flu is hitting hard in the west, though waning elsewhere
Though the flu is beginning to wane nationally, it is sickening and killing seniors at rates "higher than we've ever seen,"
a CDC flu expert said Friday.

Last week, the number of people older than 65 who died from a laboratory-confirmed case of influenza was 116 per 100,000. "We've kept rates since 2005 and we have never seen a rate this high," said Michael Jhung, an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "The highest we've ever seen in was 90 per 100,000."

He expects those numbers to go higher still. Hospitalization - and, in some cases, death - follows several weeks after a person first gets sick.

"We've still got several weeks of the season yet, so it's going to be much worse" before it's over, he said. "The deaths are still accumulating."

[continued at link]


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