(CIDRAP News) Vice President Joe Biden today told Matt Lauer on NBC's "Today" show that he has advised his family not to fly on airlines or ride subways to avoid exposure to the swine flu virus, a message that goes well beyond the government's current travel advice for Americans to avoid nonessential trips to Mexico.
The World Health Organization's (WHO's) global count of confirmed swine flu cases stands at 257 cases in 11 countries today. The United States has 109 cases and 1 death; Mexico has 97 cases and 7 deaths. [WHO update 6]
(CIDRAP News) To quell the notion that pigs are to blame for the swine influenza H1N1 epidemic, three international agencies said today they would take the "swine" out of the virus's name and call it "influenza A/H1N1" instead.
(CIDRAP News) Top US officials responsible for managing the nation's response to the swine influenza outbreak today faced increasing pressure to implement more aggressive measures at the Mexico border and reveal more details about the status of a vaccine.
(CIDRAP News) To confront the spreading swine influenza H1N1 virus, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) today raised the agency's pandemic alert level to phase 5, one notch below a full-fledged influenza pandemic, signaling that it's time for all countries to prepare.
The move comes just 2 days after the WHO raised the alert from phase 3, where it had been for several years, to phase 4.
After seeing the pandemic alert level sit at phase 3 for years, suddenly witnessing the World Health Organization (WHO) accelerate from phase 3 to phase 5 in mere days feels terribly unnerving. Unfortunately, it's the nature of the beastliterally.
Editor's note: Today we are launching a daily digest of the latest developments concerning the swine influenza H1N1 virus. This digest will be updated more than once a day as news developments dictate.
(CIDRAP News) –At an emergency hearing today of the Senate appropriations committee, Sen Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, said the Obama administration will ask for $1.5 billion to fight the swine influenza epidemic, as committee members sought to get a handle on the elements and cost estimates of the public health response.
(CIDRAP News) As the official count of US swine influenza cases rose to 64 today, top federal health officials said it's becoming increasingly clear that the virus is spreading beyond people who recently traveled to Mexico, the epicenter of the outbreak.