News & Perspective

Dec 03, 2004

Dec 03, 2004

Departing HHS chief cites pandemic flu, food tampering as top concerns

(CIDRAP News) – In announcing his resignation today after 4 years as US Health and Human services (HHS) secretary, Tommy G. Thompson cited pandemic influenza and food biosecurity as two of his biggest worries.

Thompson, who presided over massive increases in federal spending for public health preparedness and biodefense research, said in response to a question, "There are two things that really worry me yet. The big one is pandemic flu."

Dec 03, 2004

Avian flu could cost Asia $130 billion

(CIDRAP News) – Avian influenza is expected to cost Asia $130 billion by 2005, according to Hur Young-joo of the South Korean Ministry of Health and Welfare, as reported in the Dec 2 online edition of The Korea Times.

Dec 02, 2004

Dec 02, 2004

Asian nations vow cooperation on avian flu

(CIDRAP News) – As public health ministers and officials from 13 Asian countries conferred in Bangkok last week on how to prevent the spread of H5N1 avian influenza, experts offered troubling predictions.

Dec 01, 2004

Dec 01, 2004

Possible botulism reported after cosmetic injections

(CIDRAP News) – Four people in Florida and New Jersey who might have been injected with the anti-wrinkle medication Botox are seriously ill with possible botulism, according to news services.

Nov 30, 2004

Nov 30, 2004

WHO says large SARS outbreak unlikely this winter

(CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization's (WHO's) top official in the western Pacific said yesterday that SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) cases may return this winter but probably not in large numbers.

"I don't think a large outbreak is likely," Dr. Shigeru Omi, director of the WHO's Western Pacific Regional Office, said in a speech in Hong Kong. Omi was quoted in a WHO news release.

Nov 29, 2004

Nov 29, 2004

Studies find irradiation suitable for cilantro, sprouts

(CIDRAP News) – Irradiating fresh cilantro and sprouts can reduce levels of potentially dangerous microbes without affecting flavor or other sensory attributes, according to two studies published recently in the Journal of Food Protection.

Nov 24, 2004

Nov 24, 2004

Recreated gene sheds light on lethality of 1918 flu virus

(CIDRAP News) – By recreating a key surface protein from the 1918 pandemic flu virus and testing its effects in mice, researchers have shown that the protein might have been an important reason for the virus's extraordinary ability to kill.

Nov 24, 2004

USDA says cow didn't have BSE

(CIDRAP News) – The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) ended 6 days of suspense for the beef industry by announcing late yesterday that a cow suspected of having bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) didn't have the disease after all.

Nov 23, 2004

Nov 23, 2004

FDA mishandled Chiron vaccine problems, congressman says

(CIDRAP News) – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found serious problems at the Chiron Corp. flu vaccine plant in England in 2003 but failed to follow up in time to prevent the loss of half of the US vaccine supply with the plant's shutdown by British regulators last month, a Democratic congressman charged last week.

Nov 22, 2004

Nov 22, 2004

Tiger zoo reopens after avian flu outbreak; pigeons die elsewhere

(CIDRAP News) – The Sri Racha Tiger Zoo in Thailand reopened Nov 18, one day after Thai authorities reported a final tally of 102 tigers lost in the zoo's outbreak of H5N1 avian influenza.

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