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Swine Flu Thread
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Mr Gary



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PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 2:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Afghanistan's Only Pig Quarantined

Quote:
Afghanistan has one pig -- it's in a zoo -- and it's quarantined:

The animal, known simply as Khanzir, the Pashtu word for pig, was given to the zoo by China in 2002.

The zoo director says Khanzir has been moved to a large space with lots of windows and fresh air and that he hopes the pig will be quarantined for only a few days.


Afghanistan has only one pig? I mean, I guess that makes sense, right? They're not big on pork. But seriously. Just one pig?
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Sam the Eagle



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PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 3:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm more surprised they do have one at all.
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WheelsOfConfusion



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PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 3:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sam the Eagle wrote:
I'm more surprised they do have one at all.

I'm surprised there's any land-locked country in the world with only one of them, even if the majority of the population is Muslim. Heck, there are even feral pigs on very tiny islands!
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Sam the Eagle



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PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tiny islands don't have inhabitants that actively tries to kill/drive out pigs at first sight nor have neighbouring countries that shares that belief with you. Just see what's happening in Egypt now.

The very tiny non muslim minority, if it exists (thinking of sikhs around Kabul mostly) still, doesn't have an habit of pig eating either. You don't see pigs in Pakistan, nor you see them in northwest India.

The one exception I can think of would be in Laddak, then again I have no idea how well pig could adapt to himalayan climate.

It may looks odd to you, but seeing pigs anyplace in the area except in China would be very odd to me.
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nathan



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The family my sister has been staying with has a whole smoked pig leg delivered weekly and it sits in the middle of the kitchen counter wrapped in newspaper and they hack off chunks whenever they want a snack.

This doesn't have anything to do with the pig flu. I just think it's a great idea.
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sam the Eagle wrote:
Tiny islands don't have inhabitants that actively tries to kill/drive out pigs at first sight nor have neighbouring countries that shares that belief with you. Just see what's happening in Egypt now.

The very tiny non muslim minority, if it exists (thinking of sikhs around Kabul mostly) still, doesn't have an habit of pig eating either. You don't see pigs in Pakistan, nor you see them in northwest India.

The one exception I can think of would be in Laddak, then again I have no idea how well pig could adapt to himalayan climate.

It may looks odd to you, but seeing pigs anyplace in the area except in China would be very odd to me.


I think what wheels is getting at is that pigs are highly adaptable due in large part to the being omnivores and one of the smartest animals on earth, I think they're #5 or #6. As such, there aren't many places they can't live. Which reminds me of a pig related article I need to post else where.
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WheelsOfConfusion



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darqcyde wrote:
I think what wheels is getting at is that pigs are highly adaptable due in large part to the being omnivores and one of the smartest animals on earth, I think they're #5 or #6. As such, there aren't many places they can't live. Which reminds me of a pig related article I need to post else where.

No, what I was getting at was the fact that humans have dragged domesticated swine with them almost wherever they go; so to find a place with a hog population of zero (or 1) is a bit of a shock to me. I expected even most predominantly Muslim countries to have some kind of residual swineherding non-Muslim population.
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zeezee



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

my nephew announced to his mom yesterday that he has swine flu. she asked him what lead him to that conclusion.

he said he didn't feel well and he had a fever (omg 99F omg), so what else could it be??

he's 17.

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WheelsOfConfusion



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

See, I was thinking "Aw, isn't that cute?"
Until you said he was 17.
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kame



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

17 is the new 8
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mouse



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i heard that about the only afghan pig on "wait, wait - don't tell me" - poor piggie! although another article gives me hope for him:
Quote:
Acknowledging that being Afghanistan's only pig is a lonely existence, Mr Saqib says he hopes to find Khanzir a female companion soon.

However, he says, because of swine flu, "it is a dangerous and difficult time to get a new pig for our pig".


so maybe once the scare is over, he can get a date.

i was surprised to hear he was the only one also - but then i get my ideas from the flashman series of books, where the hero learns the sport of pigsticking from a pashto - which suggested that there were wild pigs in the area.

maybe it's just that this is the only pig they are willing to acknowledge.
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Merc



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 11:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had to go to the doctor yesterday due to missing work from what I thought was strep (turned out to be a bad cold combined with allergies), and he was telling me I was probably one of about five people this week he's seen that was actually sick. The other hundred or so were people wanting flu shots or who knew they were the next swine flu victim.
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Mizike



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PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2009 11:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I work with international students and we have students canceling for our summer semester because of "the serious problem of swine influenza in the United States." I even had someone (who is still in China) compare it to the 2003 SARS outbreak.

It's very annoying.
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 5:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WHO: Swine flu pandemic has begun, 1st in 41 years
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/un_un_swine_flu
By MARIA CHENG and FRANK JORDANS, Associated Press Writers 53 mins ago
Quote:
GENEVA The World Health Organization declared a swine flu pandemic Thursday the first global flu epidemic in 41 years as infections in the United States, Europe, Australia, South America and elsewhere climbed to nearly 30,000 cases.

The long-awaited pandemic announcement is scientific confirmation that a new flu virus has emerged and is quickly circling the globe. WHO will now ask drugmakers to speed up production of a swine flu vaccine. The declaration will also prompt governments to devote more money toward efforts to contain the virus.

WHO chief Dr. Margaret Chan made the announcement Thursday after the U.N. agency held an emergency meeting with flu experts. Chan said she was moving the world to phase 6 the agency's highest alert level which means a pandemic, or global epidemic, is under way.

"The world is moving into the early days of its first influenza pandemic in the 21st century," Chan told reporters. "The (swine flu) virus is now unstoppable."

On Thursday, WHO said 74 countries had reported 28,774 cases of swine flu, including 144 deaths. Chan described the virus as "moderate." According to WHO's pandemic criteria, a global outbreak has begun when a new flu virus begins spreading in two world regions.

The agency has stressed that most cases are mild and require no treatment, but the fear is that a rash of new infections could overwhelm hospitals and health authorities especially in poorer countries.

Still, about half of the people who have died from swine flu were previously young and healthy people who are not usually susceptible to flu. Swine flu is also crowding out regular flu viruses. Both features are typical of pandemic flu viruses.

The last pandemic the Hong Kong flu of 1968 killed about 1 million people. Ordinary flu kills about 250,000 to 500,000 people each year.

Swine flu is also continuing to spread during the start of summer in the northern hemisphere. Normally, flu viruses disappear with warm weather, but swine flu is proving to be resilient.

The decision might have been made much earlier if WHO had more accurate information about swine flu's rising sweep through Europe. Chan said she called the emergency meeting with flu experts after concerns were raised that some countries like Britain were not accurately reporting their cases.

After Thursday's meeting, Chan said the experts agreed there was wider spread of swine flu than what was being reported.

Chan would not say which country tipped the world into the pandemic, but said all countries and experts were agreed that it was time to declare a global outbreak.

WHO said it was now recommending that flu vaccine makers start making swine flu vaccine. Drug giant GlaxoSmithKline PLC said they could start large-scale production of pandemic vaccine in July but that it would take several months before large quantities would be available.

Many health experts say WHO's pandemic declaration could have come weeks earlier but the agency became bogged down by politics. In May, several countries urged WHO not to declare a pandemic, fearing it would cause social and economic turmoil.

"This is WHO finally catching up with the facts," said Michael Osterholm, a flu expert at the University of Minnesota who has advised the U.S. government on pandemic preparations.

Despite WHO's hopes, Thursday's announcement will almost certainly spark panic about spread of swine flu in some countries.

Fear has already gripped Argentina, where thousands of people worried about swine flu flooded into hospitals this week, bringing emergency health services in the capital of Buenos Aires to the brink of collapse. Last month, a bus arriving in Argentina from Chile was stoned by people who thought a passenger on it had swine flu.

Chile has the most swine flu cases in South America, and the southern hemisphere is moving into its winter flu season.

In Hong Kong on Thursday, the government ordered all kindergartens and primary schools closed for two weeks after a dozen students tested positive for swine flu a move that some experts would consider an overreaction. The decision affected over half a million students.

In the United States, where there have been more than 13,000 cases and at least 27 deaths from swine flu, officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the move would not change how the U.S. tackled swine flu.

"Our actions in the past month have been as if there was a pandemic in this country," Glen Nowak, a CDC spokesman, said Thursday.

The U.S. government has already taken steps like increasing availability of flu-fighting medicines and authorizing $1 billion for the development of a new vaccine against the novel virus. In addition, new cases seem to be declining in many parts of the country, U.S. health officials say, as North America moves out of its traditional winter flu season.

Still, New York City reported three more swine flu deaths Thursday, including one child under 2.

In Mexico, where the epidemic was first detected, the outbreak peaked in April. Mexico now has less than 30 cases reported a day, down from an average of 300, Health Secretary Jose Angel Cordova told The Associated Press. Mexico has confirmed 6,337 cases, including 108 deaths.

Cordova said he is concerned that other countries are not taking drastic measures to stop its spread like Mexico, which closed schools, restaurants, theaters, and canceled public events after the government detected the epidemic in late April.

Many experts said the declaration of a pandemic did not mean the virus was getting deadlier.

"People might imagine a virus is now going to rush in and kill everyone," said John Oxford, a professor of virology at St. Bart's and Royal London Hospital. "That's not going to happen."

But Oxford said the swine flu virus might evolve into a more dangerous strain in the future. "That is always a possibility with influenza viruses," he said. "We have to watch very carefully to see what this virus does."

___

AP Medical Writers Maria Cheng reported from London and Michael Stobbe reported from Atlanta. Associated Press Writers Michael E. Miller in Mexico City, Dikky Sinn in Hong Kong, Vincente L. Panetta in Buenos Aires and Bradley S. Klapper in Geneva also contributed to this report
.

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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 01, 2009 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Swine flu: Colombian president Alvaro Uribe contracts virus

Alvaro Uribe, the Colombian president, has contracted swine flu, prompting officials to contact other South American governments whose leaders attended a summit last week with the Colombian leader.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/swine-flu/6116339/Swine-flu-Colombian-president-Alvaro-Uribe-contracts-virus.html

Quote:
Mr Uribe, 57, began feeling unwell on Friday, the same day he attended a meeting of South American presidents in Bariloche, Argentina. He was confirmed to have swine flu after returning home, Diego Palacio, the social protection minster, said.

"This isn't something that has us scared," Mr Palacio said at a news conference. Mr Uribe, a key US ally in Latin America, is not considered a high-risk patient and will continue working from his computer, officials said.

Gilberto Alvarez, public health director, said that there was no need to put the president in isolation and that his condition would monitored for three days to a week.

No family members or close associates of Mr Uribe had shown swine flu symptoms, officials said.

During a Union of South American Nations summit of the region's presidents on Friday, Mr Uribe spent hours defending his plan to give US troops more access to Colombian bases as part of his government's fight against drug traffickers and leftist rebels. Many of his colleagues have voiced concerns about the idea.

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