So now that the World Health Organization (WHO) has raised their level (almost similar to the US’s terrorism colour chart) to five; which is one level before a pandemic occurs. Basically, it means that there’s been one case of the swine flu that’s been transferred between humans in one region of the world.
Outside of Mexico, only one person, a 23 month old baby, has perished from the flu. Everyone else has contracted mild strains requiring little to no hospital interaction. I’d be more concerned of regular human influenza which kills between 4000-8000 people in Canada annually (that number will probably be more in the United States due to their increased population size). Only one baby, at a vulnerable age, has succumbed to this virus. Come on people, if you do catch it, you’ll be home for a few days with mild symptoms of coughing, fatigue, sore throat and a fever. If you’re violently ill (severe nausea, loss of appetite, extreme difficulty in breathing), then you’d be in a hospital. That hasn’t happened in Canada or the United States and it probably won’t.
And with Mexico closing non-essential services (government offices, businesses, public gatherings) in Mexico City, the fear has spread to other countries where people are now reluctant to go out. I’m going to be in Chicago next week attending Anime Central, one of the largest anime conventions in the United States. Oh dear, a gathering with a large number of people in a hotel and convention center. It’s the perfect breeding ground for the swine flu… Not really. Any contagious disease can be spread through crowded groups of people in confined spaces. Do yourself a favour: wash your hands with warm water and soap. If you need to cough or sneeze, carry disposable tissues with you and promptly place in a garbage bin. Carry hand sanitizer if you’re not going to be able to wash your hands for a while. Also, do everyone a huge favour: if you are sick (with anything) do not attend!! Common sense is the key to keeping a virus at bay.
The media needs to stop freaking everyone out with “pandemic” and “first death in the United States” and “school closures.” Did any of this happen when John Doe caught the human flu last year? Didn’t think so. Calm down, think rationally, and be aware. That’s all you need.
For further information, visit the Public Health Agency of Canada website.