News & Perspective

Jun 02, 2009

Jun 02, 2009

WHO drawing closer to declaring a pandemic

(CIDRAP News) – The global novel H1N1 influenza situation is drawing closer to the status of a true pandemic but is not there yet, the World Health Organization's (WHO's) lead spokesman on the issue said today.

"Globally we believe we're in phase 5 but are getting closer to phase 6," said Dr. Keiji Fukuda, the WHO assistant director-general for health security and the environment, referring to the WHO's pandemic alert phases.

Jun 11, 2009

Jun 11, 2009

WHO declares pandemic of novel H1N1 virus

(CIDRAP News) – After delaying action for weeks as the novel H1N1 influenza virus took hold in far-flung parts of the globe, the World Health Organization (WHO) today declared a full-fledged pandemic, formally recognizing that the virus is becoming a global contagion.

Jun 12, 2009

Jun 12, 2009

Communication expert endorses WHO's delay on pandemic declaration

(CIDRAP News) – A well-known risk-communication expert said the World Health Organization (WHO) acted wisely in delaying its declaration of an influenza pandemic until yesterday, but he simultaneously expressed concern that the move may lead to complacency about the situation.

Oct 12, 2009

Oct 12, 2009

Studies point up pandemic demand on critical care resources

(CIDRAP News) – A collection of new studies is demonstrating once again the ability of the pandemic H1N1 virus to make some people desperately sick and is raising questions about the potential strain on critical-care resources this fall and winter.

Jan 25, 2010

Jan 25, 2010

WHO defends pandemic response ahead of Europe hearing

(CIDRAP News) – Just days before a Council of Europe hearing to discuss claims that pharmaceutical companies influenced the World Health Organization's (WHO's) pandemic response, the global body said charges by some European officials that the pandemic is "fake" are "wrong and irresponsible."

May 28, 2010

May 28, 2010

Age profile of H1N1 cases sparks discussion of 'original antigenic sin'

(CIDRAP News) – A letter and commentary published this week in Emerging Infectious Diseases explore the idea that "original antigenic sin"—the hypothesis that the first influenza A virus a person encounters in childhood strongly influences his or her immune responses to all related flu viruses encountered later—may explain the partial protection that older people have against the pandemic H1N1 flu virus.

May 16, 2011

May 16, 2011

World Health Assembly opens 64th session in Geneva

(CIDRAP News) – Delegates from 193 countries met today in Geneva at the start of the World Health Assembly (WHA), which will address several infectious disease topics, including a report from an independent pandemic review committee, a virus-sharing agreement, and the fate of the world's remaining smallpox virus stocks.

Oct 06, 2011

Oct 06, 2011

Study finds H1N1 pandemic in Mexico more deadly

(CIDRAP News) – Researchers who took a detailed look at 2009 H1N1 deaths in Mexico, where the virus was first detected, found that the new flu virus was more deadly than most seasonal flu epidemics and more lethal than in other countries, which confirms impressions early in the pandemic that the disease was worse in Mexico.

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