Saturday, July 25, 2009
Time To Stop Discounting Swine Flu Warnings
Airline passengers in Argentina
The news media did us all a disservice by overplaying the swine flu story when it first broke.
At the time there was really no indication that it would cause massive numbers of Americans to die. The story deserved reporting, but the breathless overselling of it in the name of ratings numbed the public to the dangers of swine flu. So that now, when there are real indications that 10s of millions of Americans could contract the swine flu, few of us are paying attention.
The USA was fortunate that the swine flu initially struck in the spring. But the ramifications during the upcoming flu season can be far more devastating.
One needs only to look at Argentina to understand this. It's wintertime - flu season - in Argentina now. And that nation has seen swine flu deaths second only to the United States. Public gatherings have been cancelled there. It's a real problem. One that could likely, according to the CDC, be replicated here this winter.
Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/elaws/3623734364/