1. NaCl
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    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

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    Cut through the BS...CDC statistics on Swine Flu

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by NaCl, Oct 29, 2009.

    The thread about pregnant women getting the Swine flu shot got me wondering about the true statistics. To cut through the government hype and public emotionalism . . . I went through a bunch of CDC docs until I found these statements:

    "Through July 2009, a total of 43,677 laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza A pandemic (H1N1) 2009 were reported in the United States, which is likely a substantial underestimate of the true number. Correcting for the under-ascertainment using a multiplier model, we estimate that 1.8 million-5.7 million cases occurred, including 9,000-21,000 hospitalizations."

    "Through July 23, 2009, a total of 43,677 laboratory-confirmed infections with pandemic (H1N1) had been reported in the United States by 50 states and the District of Columbia, including 5,009 hospitalizations and 302 deaths."

    If we give the government the benefit of the doubt and use the lower Total number of estimated infections, then 302 people died out of 1.8 million infected. The means an otherwise healthy person's risk of death from this flu is around .0025 of one percent. Of those who ARE hospitalized for this flu (5009) only 6% died and most of them had underlying health risks that contributed to the death rate.

    In my opinion, this Swine Flu hysteria serves only the political agenda of those who want the public to live frightened lives, turning to government to "save" them from all manner of risk. It's BUNK!
     
  2. SonnehLee
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    SonnehLee Contributing Member Contributor

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    Thank you, Saulty. :) I've been curious about the statistics.
     
  3. Pallas
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    Pallas Contributing Member Contributor

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    I suspected as much, thank you for the NaCl for the information. It should be an example of people doing their own research to place the media coverage in a clearer context.
     
  4. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    *applauds wildly*
     
  5. afinemess
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    afinemess Active Member

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    Awesome, I think it's being blown out of proportion. My sons pediatrician isnt even concerned about it.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    First of all, the statisics are from July. Second, there'a a lot of fudging going on with those numbers.

    In the last month or so, we have been seeing a lot more deaths associated with patients who had no identified underlying conditions.

    Now I agree that panic is not called for, but calling H1N1 bunk is rather extreme and uncalled for. It has already had a huge impact on schools and businesses, and whether or not you consider a thousand deaths in the last few months excessive, I think there is enough evidence that it a disease that should be taken seriously.
     
  7. NaCl
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    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

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    Of course it should. It CAN be deadly fora small group of people with preexisting conditions or unusual medical complications. If I had a severely asthmatic child, I would probably get him or her the inoculation. If I had a problem pregnancy such as premature separation of the placenta or fetal distress problems, I would get the vaccine. But, the overstated risks being promoted to the general public, IN MY OPINION, are being used to promote a big government agenda.

    As far as the "costs" to business, that's why I give my employees five paid sick days a year...it's already in the budget.
     
  8. arron89
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    arron89 Banned

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    Aren't they put into quarantine? That's what happened here anyway...and I guess it worked....only 3 deaths, and all of those were people with chronic illnesses already, and I don't think its going around anymore...

    I can't see how it would serve the governments interests though....they don't control the media, and the media are the ones responsible for the distortion of the facts that has led to the panic and confusion in the public sphere. On the one hand, deliberately creating scandal is irresponsible, but on the other hand, if you want a free press, you need to take the good with the bad I suppose...
     
  9. Ashleigh
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    Ashleigh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Personally, I think if it's taken lives then it's something to be taking notice of.

    I don't believe that we should live in fear, but awareness is the only way of insuring that people understand what they are potentially exposing themselves to.

    The scale of this is certainly much more vast than that of say...the 'cancerous cells in breakfast cereals' claims, and the like.

    Those statistics, however small the percentage, are factual. I think if there are alot of sick people in hospitals, at home and on the street, then it'd be a good idea to take precautions and raise awareness in order to insure that we don't lose any more lives.

    Hysteria was inevitable, but the objective still remains, if you ask me.
     
  10. breakingwave
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    breakingwave Member

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    I agree, last week, there were over 23% of the students absent in our local high school where my kids go, and that was in one day, the percentages are still staying high. So I know that some of it is related to caution but there are a lot of kids sick and the doctors around here are stating it is swine flu. Enough to be taken seriously.
     
  11. Unit7
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    Unit7 Contributing Member Contributor

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    pfft H1N1 has nothing on Captain Tripps...

    Personally I do think this whole thing was a bit overhyped. I am not saying it isn't serious, but it sorta sounded like we were all going to die.
     
  12. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, we all managed to survive Bird Flu. And remember how we were going to drop like flies from Mad Cow Disease?
    Having said that, I think I'll get my kids inoculated next month when the vaccine comes to the schools, but I'm taking them for a general checkup first. It's not compulsory to have the jab here, though.
     
  13. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Whilst I agree that Swine Flu has been massively overhyped, I think saying that it was the government is a teensy bit paranoid. Surely the CDC is a public body, so by your line of argument their figures can't be trusted at all?

    Personally, I believe it's the media overhyping it. They found a story, blew it into something far bigger than it is, and ran with it because that will sell papers, etc.

    And whilst I won't be getting the vaccine, that is because I don't feel I need it, and intend to leave it to those who actually do.
     
  14. Sylous
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    Sylous Member

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    Outside of its universal susceptibility the H1N1 influenza virus is nothing to be overly alarmed about. The media, pharmaceutical corporations, and select political entities are doing what they have always done - make lemons out of lemonade. I hold certifications in pandemic continuity of operations and government (for whatever that is worth) and the biggest threat from this virus is its ability to make a lot of people a little sick. Remember, a version of this bug cropped up in 1976 and more people were damaged from the vaccine than that virus.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about this new friend floating around. Most of my street has been hit with it and only three people developed any significant symptoms (moderate fever and coughing).

    Oh, I guess since this is my first post here I should say, “Hello all” :)
     
  15. Speedy
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    Speedy Contributing Member Contributor

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    Every ten years (maybe five these days) You always hear (Media) about news flu's, strains (Remember bird flu). Most Media channels have government interest to some degree. And media like throwing fear to the wind. So that they can come to the resuce (Government/resourceswith treatment)

    2015 we'll have something worse to worry about "cough*

    They'll probably flog that cat aids is transmittable to humans!
     
  16. Irish87
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    Irish87 Contributing Member

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    I'm not delving into this conversation, but I would just like to say to NaCI... Thank You. I was amazed when I first saw a study done on October 21st by CBS News stating how many Swine Flu cases were not actually H1N1.
     
  17. Fox Favinger
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    Fox Favinger Contributing Member

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    At the Pharmacy I work at half the staff is out from the swine and I'm taking most of their hours. Not surprising since everyday people come in coughing asking for flu stuff, and then hand me money. Needless to say I'm washing my hands like a germaphobe. My little sister got it and I pretty stayed in my room or left the house the entire time. A lot of my classmates are out right now.

    Yeah I'm pretty scared. I seriously cannot afford to miss work or school right now. I get no sick days.
     
  18. Kas
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    Kas Contributing Member

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    According to the CDC, an average of 36,000 Americans die of flu complications each year.

    And I don't have sick days, either. . . so that's what I worry about. Same thing every year. I can't say it matters to me what they call the flu. Flu sucks in general. More flu = bad news. It will be interesting to see what the stats are for 2009 compared to a more typical year. When it's all over and done with, you could probably pull stats from some especially bad year in the 90s to trump this one. . .
     
  19. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Here's a new statistic from the CDC on today's news: In the past week, there were 22 deaths of children from H1N1 in the United States, approximately twice the annual number of child deaths from flu in an average year.

    Health officials are saying that these deats appear to be largely because patients are waiting too long to seek medical assistance, waiting until they are in respiratory distress.

    In other words, people are not taking this disease seriously enough. Initial symptoms typically seem milder than seasonal flu, but it can progress rapidly.

    I know there's a natural tendency to be cynical about government involvement and the big pharmaceutical business. This may not be smallpox or mutated anthrax, but it is serious, and everyone is simply doing their best to mitigate the impact.
     
  20. Kas
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    Kas Contributing Member

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    Oh, Cog. . . Conspiracy theorists are gonna have a field day with that one.:eek: (they'll blame it on the vaccine)

    It is worrisome, though.
     
  21. k.little90
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    k.little90 Active Member

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    Mmk... so I work in a hospital. Here's the inside scoop on H1N1:

    The media AND the government have played up the severity of H1N1 to the max. The hospital I work at has been preparing with vaccines and new security and visitor restrictions, not because they are worried about a huge epidemic, but because they are worried about what the public will do to them if they do not appear to be preparing for a huge epidemic. The media has blown it so out of proportion that we are getting every hypochondriac, concerned parent and the like in our ER, making it hard to focus on REAL medical emergencies.

    An email that was sent around by one of the hospital directors said that H1N1 is just like an extreme case of the flu, with very little threat to the average person. H1N1 becomes dangerous when there is an underlying condition, like asthma or pneumonia, or when someone is very old or very young. If you will look closely at the statistics, MOST (I say this because there are, unfortunately, exceptions to every study and statistic) of the people that died from the virus fit into one or more of the named categories.

    Another way that the H1N1 virus can become dangerous is if it mutates or combines with another virus. That is where the push to keep H1N1 cases isolated comes from.

    I don't know if doctors are necessarily prescribing antibiotics for the H1N1 virus, but if they are, something that people should be aware of is that they ABSOLUTELY NEED to keep up on their dosage if they start. It is EXTREMELY dangerous for someone to start a cycle of antibiotics and to stop before the full dose is complete. Doing such can create something called a Superbug ( a term also used to describe the mutation or combination of one virus with another), or a strain of virus that is resistant to antibiotics. What happens is the antibiotics introduce bacteria into the body that seek out and kill any other bacteria that doesn't belong in your body. So, basically, they give you a little bit of a virus in each dosage/pill/whatever. This system also helps your body build antibodies against that certain virus, making it much harder for you to catch the same one again. If you stop taking your antibiotics or are inconsistent with taking them, then the bacteria can mutate and multiply in your body, getting stronger, and eventually becoming resistant to the antibiotic.

    Sorry for the school lesson ;)

    One example I have actually involves myself :redface:. I have tuberculosis (as of right now it hasn't surfaced in my lungs... fingers crossed!) My doctor put me on nine months of antibiotics to treat it and I have been extremely inconsistent with it because... well... because I'm dumb. When my doctor found out I wasn't taking it the way it was suppose to be taken, he rushed me in for a chest x-ray, worried that I may have made the antibodies for TB in my body mutate. Everything was clear, but my doc basically explained to me that I was extremely lucky that it hadn't developed in my lungs.

    Anyway, to make a long story longer, the H1N1 virus is really only dangerous when it's treated incorrectly or when there is a preexisting condition of illness. I mean, come on guys, I had it and I survived :D I didn't even know I had it until a couple of weeks after!
     
  22. afinemess
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    afinemess Active Member

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    This could be the dumbest idea ever, but I think they should make a swine flu sawb. That way you can test for it at home instead of migrating to crowded doctors offices and infected others. I was sick last week, but I didnt go to the doc incase I didnt have it, and I didnt want to risk my son catching it. I guess I didnt, I am better now, and my son still hasnt gotten it. Must have been the seasonal flu. If I wouldnt have been such a woosy I would have gotten the shot when I had him vaxed. haha
     
  23. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Antibiotics are completely useless against H1N1. It is a virus, not a bacterial infection. Antibiotics would be called for only to deal with a secondary infection, such as a bacterial pneumonia. But it is true that any time you are on an antibiotic, it is essential to complete the full course.

    K.little, the number of fatal cases with no discernable pre-existing conditions have been increasing, and that is a trend causing considerable concern in the medical community.
     
  24. k.little90
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    k.little90 Active Member

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    Hmm... Really? I wonder if its mutating then. Or maybe age has something to do with the number. An article I just found said that the majority of hospitalizations and fatalities for this and last week are children from 0-4.
     
  25. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    It probably also varies depending on the region. Toronto has had a high rate of flu cases, but almost no deaths.
     

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