Is There Any Middle Ground On The Vaccine Debate?


People have their pros and cons about vaccines, we all know this. It’s been one of the most heated discussions between parents in at least the last 10 years. Most people do their chosen amount of research, state their case, and never budge from that point. This can be a dilemma, no matter which side you are looking at it from. But what if we were to approach it from a different angle, one that most anti-vaxxers can relate with but pro-vaxxers can still agree to(hopefully)? Continue reading


BREAKING – Taiwan reports 42 suspected cases of H7N9


China bird flu outbreak at 38, Taiwan reports 42 suspected cases, none confirmed

The human H7N9 avian influenza outbreak in China has grown to 38 cases, according to the World Health Organization. Of this total, 10 have resulted in death.

“Based on a seven-day dormant period of virus, the middle of this month is going to be a critical moment for containing any epidemic of H7N9.

…Authorities are still working through the theory that people are contracting the virus through direct contact with infected birds.

The authorities say there’s been no discernable proof of people-to-people transmissions…”.

H7N9 will not peter out anytime soon: health official

Taipei, April 11 (CNA) The new strain of H7N9 avian flu will not disappear anytime soon, the deputy minister of the Department of Health (DOH) said Thursday.

Although Taiwanese experts who recently returned from a fact-finding visit to Shanghai reportedly suggested that a bird flu pandemic will not occur in the short term, the virus will not peter out soon either, Lin Tzou-yien said at a meeting on prevention measures that was attended by officials from the DOH and the Council of Agriculture (COA).


Shanghai Animal Apocalypse Accelerating: Pigs, Ducks, Black Swans, Chickens And Now Fish, 21 Confirmed Cases, 1 in 3 People Who Got Sick of This Flu Has Died, Gov’t Closing All Live Poultry Markets, Hong Kong On Standby For H7N9 Outbreak, MCD Slashing Chicken Prices in Shanghai on Birdflu…

Pigs, Ducks, Black Swans, Chickens And Now Fish: The Shanghai Animal Apocalypse Accelerates

Shanghai just can’t catch a break – first it was floating dead pigs, then ducks, then black swans, then mass chicken exterminations, and now fish. From the Telegraph: ” Just weeks after over 16,000 putrefying pigs were pulled from Shanghai’s Huangpu river, more than 250kg of dead carp had to be retrieved from a river in the city’s Songjiang district. Mystery still surrounds the cause of death, but numerous explanations have surfaced in the Chinese media since residents first complained about the foul-smelling fish last Monday. Theories reportedly include climate change, electrocution, an explosion or even a drug overdose. The Shanghai Daily quoted a local government official who “speculated” the fish could have been “drugged.” So, in China things are so good, even the fish are ODing on sleeping pills? Hardly, but the fact that this is even floated “out there” just shows how miserably The Onion has missed its IPO window.

MCD slashing chicken prices in Shanghai on birdflu. How is YUM faring?

How do you know when the people “just say no” to chicken over rampant bird flu concerns? When even McDonalds (whose ad campaign for the past decade “I am loving it” continues to be an anagram for “ailing vomit“) is forced to slash chicken-related prices, in this case the 20 piece McNuggets, from CNY36 to CNY20. Pretty soon not even giving away the McMystery meat will clear out the shelves of all chicken-related fast food first in Shanghai and soon elsewhere in China. Finally, we dread to imagine the horrors that will befall Yum (read China KFC sales), now that after so much pain, the fast-food chain had finally reported a modest bounce in Chinese sales. So much for that.


Xinhua News Agency‏@XHNews22 h
Another H7N9 infection was reported in Anhui Province Sunday night, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in China to 21.

H7N9 Bird Flu Cases Reach 21 In China; Death Total Unchanged At Six

Three new cases of the deadly bird flu H7N9 were discovered in China yesterday, bringing the total in the country to 21, the government’s Xinhua news agency reported this morning.  The sick have all been discovered in eastern China; Shanghai, one of the country’s most important international business hubs, has 10 of the cases.

Eastern Chinese cities have been closing live poultry markets and taking other measures to try to contain the disease which has killed six to date.
Quite a lot of information here including the 21st case.

H7N9: Asia braces for spillover

Via IRIN Asia, a very useful and informative article on what the neighbours are saying and doing: Asia braces for spill-over of new bird flu strain. By all means read the whole story. Excerpt: 

Officials throughout Asia are implementing measures to protect themselves from a new strain of bird flu – H7N9 – that has so far infected 21 people in China, killing six.

These are the first human infections and deaths to have been recorded from this virus strain worldwide. China’s neighbours have reacted by boosting hospital capabilities and disease surveillance, strengthening border control, issuing reminders to ban illegal poultry imports, and more vigorously testing what is imported.

Shanghai closing all live poultry markets as China avian flu toll rises to 6
Shanghai will temporarily close all its live poultry markets after an unusual strain of bird flu that has so far killed six people in China was found in pigeons on sale in the city.a sign of broader regional concern about the situation, the Hospital Authority in Hong Kong said it had sent a team of six people, including experts from Hong Kong University and the Center for Health Protection, to Shanghai on Thursday.The team’s purpose was to “learn about the experience of H7N9″ in Shanghai, the authority said, adding that it was due to return late Friday.
1 in 3 people Who got sick of this flu has died.
Shanghai Is The Largest City By Population In
Largest Cities of the World – (by metro population)
7. Shanghai – China – Population of 20.8m – Shanghai is the biggest city in China. The City was originally established in the year 960 AD. Shanghai is the world’s busiest Container Port.

Gregor Peter‏@L0gg0l1 h
PLA officer calls H7N9 virus a US ‘bio-psychological weapon’, causes outrage in Chinese social media

Gregor Peter‏@L0gg0l2 h
Senior Chinese military official calls new bird flu a ‘US bio-psychological weapon’ … (h/t @Asher_Wolf) #H7N9


It Is Only The Flu

(  It is only the Flu. These are the famous words of the political leaders of the day, in 1917-1918 while large populations of the world were dying.

They called it the Spanish Flu pandemic. Pandemic means an epidemic, which spreads over a wide area. It was incorrectly named because World War I was going on and the governments on both side had censorship of the news. Spain was not at war and their newspapers reported the latest information on the pandemic as it was occurring.

Because most of the timely and accurate information was coming from that country people wrongfully thought Spain started the whole thing. It is most likely that the 1917 Great Influenza epidemic started in Kansas and was taken to an army camp by some young men who were joining up to fight, now that the US had entered the war.

Military bases and college campuses are some of the worst places to be if there is an easily spread disease around, especially if it is passed on by coughing and sneezing. People go from living in lots of open space of the family home, to the very confined space of a crowded dormitory room or a military barracks.

The practice of medicine in 1917 was not what it is today. Many doctors of the time attended medical schools that did not require the student to have an undergraduate degree. Some doctors graduated from medical school without ever seeing a live patient. Also because the US had entered the First World War, the military had already done a very good job of screening for the better trained medical personnel and then drafting the most competent physicians in the country.

This unfortunately left the older, less modern trained doctors, and the ones who attended questionable medical schools, to treat the sickening public. A public that was about to start dying by the tens of thousands in this county and by the millions world wide. The death rate had been reported has high as 40 million back during the epidemic and has been revised within the last couple of years to approximately 100 million.

According to John M. Barry who wrote the book The Great Influenza, it killed more people in twenty four weeks than AIDS has killed in the past twenty four years. Most people in the US at the time were directly affected by the Flu. If not as a patient themselves, than by a family member, close friend or neighbor who suffered and died.

My great-grandparents and all but, their oldest daughter (to include my grandfather) contracted the Flu. My great aunt nursed the entire family back to good health then contracted the flu herself and died. I first heard that story in the 1950s when we would go to Missouri and visit my great-grandmother. Thirty plus years after the pandemic the family was still talking about it as if it had just happened.

It is different when you actually lose a family member in an epidemic vs. reading about it in the paper. It would appear the US gave this lethal crisis to the world and as it developed the politicians and the military leaders not only turned a blinded eye, but withheld important information that would have allowed the public to prepare and react more efficiently.

After all it was only the flu.

President Wilson never publicly acknowledged that there ever was a flu. At the end of war he traveled to Europe and promptly contracted the influenza himself. One of the effects of the flu in some patients is swelling in the brain. Even if you survive it can be a precursor to strokes later in life. President Wilson had a major debilitating stroke shortly after he returned to the US. But it was only the influenza.

A 2005 cover story for National Geographic was “The Next Killer Flu-Can we stop it?” Have you seen the movie Contagion? The TV and print news are continually running stories about current flu issues in the US. In some areas there has been a flu vaccine shortages and that was for the regular normal (what ever that means) yearly flu.

People, who wait until the media creates a panic about shortages before they try to get their flu shoot, are their own worst enemy. Between thirty, and fifty thousand Americans, die each year from flu (again normal flu). If you think the response to the hurricane disaster this year was slow to meet the public’s needs that will pale in comparison if there is a pandemic flu outbreak. Remember people did not fly back in 1917. This time it will spread faster and more deadly. Go see Contagion it is the best two hour explanation of how it will happen and how devastating it will be. It is not if – it is when.

Then get your Flu Shot.

Second Minnesota Teen Dies of Flu in 10 Days; ‘OFFICIALS’ Urge Flu Shots [But Guess What? **This Poor Girl GOT the Flu Shot!**]

Mugshot Processed -

(StarTribune) – A 14-year-old girl from St. Louis Park died of complications from influenza Tuesday afternoon, the second otherwise healthy teenager killed by the disease in Minnesota in 10 days.

A spokeswoman for the state Department of Health on Tuesday again urged all Minnesotans to get flu shots to protect them from the virus, which has killed five people and hospitalized at least 600 in the state since October.

The girl, identified by her family’s church and on Facebook memorial sites as Carly Christenson, a ninth-grader at St. Louis Park High School, was admitted to Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis on Christmas Eve and died at 12:40 p.m. Tuesday.

Kris Ehresmann, head of the infectious diseases and vaccine program at the state Health Department, said she could not confirm reports that the girl, who died of influenza Type A, had received a flu shot.

Ehresmann stressed that the relatively rare deaths of people who were vaccinated should not lead to the conclusion that the shots are pointless. The vaccine is considered 60 percent effective against the flu in healthy adults, she said.

It “is not 100 percent effective, so, sadly, it is possible to have a situation in which someone vaccinated develops influenza,” Ehresmann said. “We still are recommending vaccination” for everyone, especially vulnerable groups such as the elderly and those with underlying medical conditions.

Carly’s parents, Sean and Sandy Christenson, were in mourning Tuesday night and declined to speak to the media. Their church, Westwood Lutheran in St. Louis Park, said on its Facebook page that Carly’s parents and her 12-year-old brother, Wyatt, were with her when she died. Candles will be lit and prayers said in her memory at the church’s regular Wednesday evening service at 6:30 p.m. Her funeral was being planned for Saturday.

St. Louis Park High School, where Carly played on a junior varsity basketball team, said on its website that it has deployed counselors, social workers and other staff to help grieving students. It canceled all of Tuesday night’s girls’ basketball games. “The high school and entire school district send our thoughts and prayers to her family and friends,” the school said.

Official confirmation of the state’s fifth flu death of the season normally would not have come until Thursday, but because Carly’s struggle with the flu had been followed by a Twin Cities TV station for several days before her death, the agency decided to confirm it Tuesday, Ehresmann said.