News & Perspective

Jul 23, 2008

Jul 23, 2008

New pandemic vaccine plan keeps focus on critical workers

(CIDRAP News) – Federal health officials today released their official guidance on allocating vaccine during an influenza pandemic, with few changes from a previous draft that put military personnel, critical health and emergency workers, pregnant women, and small children at the head of the line.

Jul 17, 2008

Jul 17, 2008

FDA ends warning on tomatoes, focuses on peppers

(CIDRAP News) – Federal officials today lifted warnings against eating certain tomatoes and said new clues in the ongoing nationwide Salmonella outbreak have led investigators from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to explore a Mexican packinghouse that handles jalapeno and Serrano peppers.

Jun 27, 2008

Jun 27, 2008

Salmonella source still a mystery as cases top 800

(CIDRAP News) – Frustrated federal officials today reported they were still hunting for a major break in their investigation of a nationwide Salmonella outbreak thought to be caused by tomatoes, and for the first time they hinted that another type of produce might be responsible for the illnesses, which have now risen to 810 confirmed cases.

Jun 20, 2008

Jun 20, 2008

UN official: Bird biosecurity lapses could worsen food crisis

(CIDRAP News) – Lax biosecurity measures around poultry in some countries could lead to an increasing number of H5N1 avian influenza outbreaks that could exacerbate the global food crisis, an official from the United Nations Food and AgricultureOrganization (FAO) said at an international infectious disease conference in Malaysia today.

Jun 12, 2008

Jun 12, 2008

Baxter says cell-based H5N1 vaccine did well in trial

(CIDRAP News) – A pharmaceutical company is reporting good results in the first clinical trial of an H5N1 avian influenza vaccine that uses a whole, killed H5N1 virus grown in cell culture—a combination of techniques that entails some risk but may boost immune response and shorten production time.

May 28, 2008

May 28, 2008

Some avian flu H7 viruses growing more human-like

(CIDRAP News) – Scientists have found evidence that North American avian influenza viruses of the H7 subtype are becoming more like human flu viruses in their ability to attach to host cells, which suggests they may be improving their capacity to infect humans.

Apr 16, 2008

Apr 16, 2008

Guidance offered for protecting vulnerable groups in flu pandemic

(CIDRAP News) – Acting on the premise that "disasters discriminate," the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) and several partner groups yesterday released a lengthy set of proposed guidelines for protecting the most vulnerable people during an influenza pandemic.

Feb 20, 2008

Feb 20, 2008

CDC says state preparedness much improved since 2001

(CIDRAP News) – The distribution of more than $5 billion in federal funds since 2001 has greatly improved states' preparedness to deal with disease outbreaks, natural disasters, and other public health emergencies, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said today in a first-of-its-kind assessment.

Jan 18, 2008

Jan 18, 2008

ACLU sees coercive theme in federal pandemic plans

(CIDRAP News) – The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) this week charged that federal pandemic planning efforts rely too heavily on law enforcement and national security approaches, in effect making people, not disease, the enemy.

Jan 11, 2008

Jan 11, 2008

OIE chief's downplaying of pandemic risk draws fire

(CIDRAP News) – Disease experts and preparedness advocates reacted negatively today to comments by the head of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) suggesting that the risk of an influenza pandemic posed by the H5N1 avian flu virus is minimal.

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