Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Thailand: 1.3 Million Mobilized to Contain Bird Flu Outbreak

We're talking about 1.3 million people here. Not so few indeed. So far 13 people have killed, so hopefully all these people will be able to contain it (and not contract the disease themselves). I'm quite amazed. Will the Thai authorities really be able to pull this one off?

The main mission of these volunteers and health workers (400,000 and 900,000 respectively), is to look for signs of the avian bird flu. If they find animals with symptoms of the avian flu, these animals will be duly killed and the owners sent for health inspection. Health Minister Suchai Charoenratanakul is confident that this measure will prevent the disease from becoming widespread.

In regard to the Avian Flu: Should we take this disease lightly? Probably not, since it has already been hyped up by all imaginable media outlets (did I hear the shopping channel talk about this?). But the statistics in Thailand speak a million words, or rather, the 13 words, which are the names of the people who have died from the disease in Thailand---and more importantly, to put this into perspective--- this is out of 19 confirmed human cases). You do the math (Spoiler: 68.42%).

At the same time, a local newspaper reported that the avian bird flu is spreading rapidly across Thailand with 39 out of 78 provinces having either confirmed or suspected infections to livestock.

What will this mean? An economist (who knows who) once said: "In the long run, we're all dead". But does that justify ignoring the early signals of the Avian Bird Flu? This is not a medical blog, so I will not give anyone medical advise.

The question for you to ask your local doctor is: What would happen to your neck of the woods, if the disease could be transmitted from human to human and someone down the street contracted the Avian flu?

What will your government do? And what will a widespread epidemic mean to the global economy and your job? (You may want to ask Mr. Bernanke this question).
Thank you.

Related Links:

Article on the flu spreading in Thailand:

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