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It is a little disconcerting to read about the 5th confirmed death and the 6th case of human bird flu in China. The geographic areas that these people were from are far removed from each other. Hard to imagine that there won’t be more, particularly in light of the celebration of the Chinese New Year. Even more disturbing is the fact that the WHO Global Pandemic Preparedness Plan is at a Stage 3 alert – which is Pandemic Alert. The scale only goes to 6 people, which means according to the WHO we are halfway to hell. The US pandemic alert is still at zero meaning that there are confirmed cases of infected birds/animals outside this country. If you look closely at the US alert scale, while we are at zero we have still crossed the line into the Pandemic Alert Period and our scale only goes to 6 as well.
I think that it is time to take stock of our stockpiles and re-assess our situation once again. I think Tom’s paranoia is rubbing off but honestly if the CDC and WHO are so convinced that we are OVERDUE for a pandemic of some type, I think caution is warranted.