Monday, July 21, 2008

The Next Killer?

This time birds are not to blame, but tourists.

It's not just the nuclear armageddons or the dreadful causes of climate change I am so afraid of.

I wasn't this easily shaken earlier. Years ago I was thinking about travelling all over the world working in refugee camps and disaster zones.

After having a baby, every headline with words like "killer" makes me sick with anxiety.

The dream of travelling all over the world is changing into buying an interrail ticket with my dear little Miss Funnybunny. Needless to say, I do not wish her to see many disaster areas.

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Black Swans. I'm also thinking about them right now. After telling you, with photos, how to use the Finnish Sauna properly - some light-hearted stuff in the middle of all this agony, you see - I'll be posting about Black Swans. You know what they are? A hint: Not birds.

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World warned over killer flu pandemic

By Ben Russell, Political Correspondent, Independent
Monday, 21 July 2008

The world is failing to guard against the inevitable spread of a devastating flu pandemic which could kill 50 million people and wreak massive disruption around the globe, the Government has warned.

In evidence to a House of Lords committee, ministers said that early warning systems for spotting emerging diseases were "poorly co-ordinated" and lacked "vision" and "clarity". They said that more needed to be done to improve detection and surveillance for potential pandemics and called for urgent improvement in rapid-response strategies.

The Government's evidence appeared in a highly critical report from the Lords Intergovernmental Organisations Committee, which attacked the World Health Organisation (WHO) as "dysfunctional" and criticised the international response to the threat of an outbreak of disease which could sweep across the globe.

The Government said: "While there has not been a pandemic since 1968, another one is inevitable." Ministers said it would could kill between two and 50 million people worldwide and that such an outbreak would leave up to 75,000 people dead in Britain and cause "massive" disruption.

Please read the rest at the Independent site.

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