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Swine flu: Are you safe?

Swine Flu

Swine Flu

The swine flu does not have any preventive vaccine for humans, although timely medication can cure it. The medicine advised is Tamiflu and Relenza. Fortunately for India, it already has a stockpile of one million doses of Tamiflu. The government is now planning to double its buffer stock by ordering another million doses of the drug.”These drugs have a shelf live of five years. So we may increase our buffer stock,” said a top health official.

There are no suspected cases of swine flu in India till now. But the govt has ordered screening of all passengers arriving from US, UK, Canada, Mexico, France and New Zealand, while advising to avoid “non-essential travel” to these flu-affected countries. Given that these are fairly common symptoms for all kinds of ailments, expect some confusion at the airports, especially in Delhi and Mumbai.

Scientists say it’s a rogue form of the H1N1 virus that has mutated into a never-before-seen mixture of viruses from pigs, birds and humans. What’s really worrying scientists is that the new strain has killed people, mostly young adults – the hallmark of pandemic flu. What’s most worrying about the present outbreak is the swift human-to-human transmission of this virus.

Scientists say it’s a rogue form of the H1N1 virus that has mutated into a never-before-seen mixture of viruses from pigs, birds and humans. What’s really worrying scientists is that the new strain has killed people, mostly young adults – the hallmark of pandemic flu. What’s most worrying about the present outbreak is the swift human-to-human transmission of this virus.

US President Barack Obama, however, said while there was cause for concern, there was no need for alarm. The decision by his administration to declare a US public health emergency was a ‘precautionary tool’ that would give health officials the resources needed to respond quickly and effectively to the flu threat, he said.

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