News & Perspective

Dec 05, 2003

Dec 05, 2003

Flu activity widespread in 13 states; vaccine shortage feared

(CIDRAP News) – Signs of an unusually bad influenza season increased this week as federal health officials reported widespread influenza in 13 states and hints of a possible vaccine shortage began to appear.

Dec 12, 2003

Dec 12, 2003

States' progress in health preparedness called modest

(CIDRAP News) – Despite a flood of new federal aid, the states are only modestly better prepared to cope with major health emergencies now than they were before the terrorist attacks of 2001, according to a report by a nonprofit public health advocacy group.

Nov 11, 2004

Nov 11, 2004

FLU SERIES Scrambling for vaccine: Some cities using lotteries to ration flu vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – Massachusetts residents in at least three communities are hoping to obtain flu shots through the luck of the draw as local health departments seek the fairest way to distribute limited vaccine supplies among those who need them the most.

Apr 13, 2005

Apr 13, 2005

Pandemic flu virus from 1957 mistakenly sent to labs

(CIDRAP News) – The revelation that samples of the influenza virus that caused the flu pandemic of 1957-58 were inadvertently sent to thousands of laboratories has raised fears of a new pandemic and triggered an urgent effort to destroy the samples.

Apr 19, 2005

Apr 19, 2005

Some H2N2 virus samples lost in transit

April 19, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – What began as a routine attempt to measure laboratories' testing proficiency has become a mission to track missing shipments of potentially lethal influenza viruses in Mexico, South Korea, and Lebanon.

Apr 20, 2005

Apr 20, 2005

H2N2 flu virus samples all found, most destroyed

April 20, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – Samples of a potentially lethal influenza virus that were inadvertently mailed to laboratories around the world have all been found, the World Health Organization (WHO) said today.

A sample of the influenza A(H2N2) virus that had been missing in Beirut was found at the airport, the Associated Press (AP) quoted WHO spokeswoman Maria Cheng as saying today. "That will be destroyed soon," she said.

Jan 25, 2006

Jan 25, 2006

Limits on US distribution of Tamiflu lifted

(CIDRAP News) – Roche announced yesterday it was again shipping its antiviral drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu) to all US markets, lifting restrictions imposed last fall because of concern about people hoarding the drug out of fear of a potential influenza pandemic.

May 03, 2006

May 03, 2006

New US pandemic plan stresses local self-reliance

(CIDRAP News) – The White House today released a lengthy new plan describing how the government intends to cope with an influenza pandemic, but officials continued to stress their standard message that states and communities will have to rely mainly on themselves in that situation, with the federal government in an advisory role.

Jul 18, 2007

Jul 18, 2007

HHS, DHS fund public health preparedness and emergency response

(CIDRAP News) – The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) yesterday announced it was providing states, US territories, and four metropolitan areas with $896.7 million in public health preparedness funding, with $175 million of the total earmarked for pandemic planning.

Preparedness grantsThe bulk of the money is allocated toward Public Health Emergency Cooperative Agreements, which public health departments use to build capacity.

Oct 19, 2007

Oct 19, 2007

Study: Cold, dry air favors spread of flu in lab animals

(CIDRAP News) – Scientists investigating why seasons drive annual influenza epidemics have charted how low humidity and cold temperatures contribute to the spread of the disease in laboratory animals.

The research group, from Mt Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, published their findings yesterday in the October issue of Public Library of Science Pathogens (PLoS Pathogens).

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