Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Bird flu trends, masked by media reporting

For those who have an interest in the TS bird flu contracts, I came across an interesting article (by way of Marginal Revolution).

It's just early September and already the number of confirmed cases of bird flu in humans has equalled that of all last year. And we are just entering flu season. Since the resurgence of the disease in late 2003 (four cases that year), there has been a steady escalation, with 46 cases in 2004, doubling to 97 in 2005 and as of today already 97 this year And it's only September. WHO now has recorded 244 cases since 2003, with 143 deaths (WHO).

Newspaper editors periodically tire of reporting on bird flu, or run stories that things are looking better, or that a vaccine has been devised. Many people have the impression the threat has bated. In truth, the disease is moving steadily forward, with no let up.

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