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RSS icon Comments on First Human-To-Human Bird Flu Case Confirmed


I probably will be when there's a working link.

Posted by Greg | December 28, 2007 11:28 AM


Posted by chunkstyle | December 28, 2007 11:29 AM

You really are the worst at linking. It's not that hard!

Posted by Amelia | December 28, 2007 11:29 AM

When I grow a beak and pin feathers, I'll get in touch.

Posted by Jubilation T. Cornball | December 28, 2007 11:31 AM


Posted by Mr. Poe | December 28, 2007 11:33 AM

I thought Foghorn Leghorn was a relative of yours, Jube.

Posted by Fnarf | December 28, 2007 11:35 AM

Even if the link worked, I wouldn't be scared. The statistics about how many people have actually ever died from bird flu aren't scary to anyone who actually thinks logically about such things. In the past four years, only about 343 people have been confirmed to have the bird flu. Even with human-to-human contact, I don't see it as very scary.

Posted by Jo | December 28, 2007 11:35 AM

@6 -- He is, but the rooster traits are recessive.

Posted by Jubilation T. Cornball | December 28, 2007 11:37 AM

Oh, come on, Jube, everybody knows you pluck those pinfeathers out. Recessive, my ass. So vain!

Posted by Fnarf | December 28, 2007 11:41 AM

No, because I have really good insurance, if I didn't I might be pissing myself.

Posted by Y.F. | December 28, 2007 11:43 AM

What exactly is the point of being scared exactly? All your articles say essentially 'we don't have the infrastructure to deal and we can't do jack about any of it'. WTF?

Posted by karst | December 28, 2007 11:45 AM

Am I scared yet?

No, but since most of us have known this would eventually happen since the WHO Director showed up at the UW back in 2005, and that we quickly figured out what it meant ....

Besides, living in Fear is something only unpatriotic Americans do. The rest of us are made of sterner stuff than that.

Posted by Will in Seattle | December 28, 2007 11:49 AM

No. Every panic has passed me by.

Posted by Jason Josephes | December 28, 2007 11:50 AM

Nope. Not scared. Even if I was going to die from bird flu, I'd just die bloated on the toilet, like Elvis.

Posted by Hernandez | December 28, 2007 11:51 AM

Not at all, one of the Health Officers at King County Dept of Health is really cute, so no fears. (Dennis you are still HOT!!!)

Posted by Cato the Younger Younger | December 28, 2007 11:54 AM

Didn't human to human contact already play a sizeable role in the previous 343 deaths? I'll panic when ~1000 people drop dead within a week... oh wait, no I won't. I'll still drink my tea, take my vitamins, eat and exercise reasonably well and if it gets me, it gets me.

Posted by Gomez | December 28, 2007 11:58 AM

perhaps if i could read french...

Posted by brandon | December 28, 2007 11:58 AM

Oh Erica, you and your flu.

Say we have a pandemic, and lots of people die. Yes, it would be dreadful, and I could be one of the people who die, and that would suck.

But it wouldn't be the first time this has happened, and it won't be the last. That's the way nature works. We're animals. Animals get sick and die.

As far as being prepared goes, I think we're probably no worse than the folks back in 1917, which was the last "big" flu pandemic (but not the latest pandemic. There have been several in my lifetime. The last big one was, I think, the swine flu back in the 70's) Seattle was hard hit in '17, but the town is still here. Life went on.

So no, I'm not scared. Even if I was, there's nothing I can do about it, so what's the point?

Posted by catalina vel-duray | December 28, 2007 12:02 PM

amelia is right about you chewing butt-crusties when it comes to linking

Posted by you suck ecb. go cook something | December 28, 2007 12:10 PM

16 - no.

there was one case that was questionable a few years ago, but that's it. if it had gone human to human and killed 343 people, there would be even more mass panic than there has been already.

and not to be all scary-mary, but this isn't one of those things that vitamins and bed rest will take care of [FYI that doesn't actually work, even with a typical flu]. the flu is serious business and is still one of the leading causes of death in the US [about 50-70K/yr, mostly oldsters]. mutant bird flu is even worse. i think they have a vaccine though, or are at least close to it.

but still, if it happens, there's not much you can do i guess. so.... whatever. but it doesn't hurt to be aware.

Posted by brandon | December 28, 2007 12:10 PM

But I really do like this epistolatory nature of Erica's tirade; likely saving up for the debate within commenting. Are you scared, oh fearless one?

Posted by daniel | December 28, 2007 12:15 PM

Link is fixed.

And: Tirade? It's literally four words!

Posted by ECB | December 28, 2007 12:37 PM

Actually, the issue that scares people with this particular virus is that the people with the healthiest immune systems (hello young adults!) are the ones most likely to succumb to the flu due to their bodies' defense mechanisms going into overdrive.

At this point, it's still considered an avian flu. The people that have caught it so far are those that work in close proximity to infected birds, and of those reported infections the mortality rate was around 60%. It's highly pathonogenic. Multiple mutations of this virus will continue in birds, which science(tm) fears will lead to eventual human to human tranmission (=death to all my friends. Not me, my immune system kinda sucks.).

Posted by kate | December 28, 2007 12:40 PM

"...a single case of human-to-human transmission of the H5N1 bird flu virus in a family in PAKISTAN..."

HOLY FUCK! This country is making its year-end sprint to win Most Fucked Up Country of 2007. And here I thought it had shot its competitive wad yesterday. What's next? Will the city government of Islamabad announce the installation of a streetcar?!?!?

Posted by Jubilation T. Cornball | December 28, 2007 12:41 PM

I am absolutely certain that Americans will be terrified, Erica.

After all, everyone's so afraid of terrorism and hijacked airplanes that they stand in lines and take off their shoes, but don't give a thought at all to the 40,000+ people who die every year in auto accidents (some of them, presumably, to or from the airport).

Posted by Mickymse | December 28, 2007 12:56 PM

Scared? Hell, no. I'll just whip out my trusty .44 magnum and blow those little fuckers to Hell.

Posted by NRA | December 28, 2007 12:57 PM

As someone old enough to have been around for the last wave of bird flu, (67? 68? 69?) which admittedly wasn't as large or serious of a pandemic as '17, I have some mild hope that I have some antibodies in me to help fight it off, when and if it comes in my lifetime.

all you jokers born since then, might be in a heap of trouble...that's why so many young adults die in relation to the elderly. The older you are, the more likely you've been exposed to a strain of bird flu when you were younger.

and a distubingly large amount of people could die and sadly, it will probably be a lot of poor people who can't pay for good healthcare.

Posted by michael strangeways | December 28, 2007 1:37 PM

Do they still think that kimchee has some anti-bird-flu properties? I'm serious. I recall reading something about this. If so, stock up!! :D

Posted by treacle | December 28, 2007 2:31 PM

And wait... Do you want us to be scared? If so, why? There's already tons of fear-mongering going around (Eeek! Terrorists!), why add to that? Surely you don't think being afraid helps any.

Posted by treacle | December 28, 2007 2:42 PM

#7 - It's not the amount that catch it that make it scary. Its the amount that survive. About 62% of the cases are fatal.
Ok but youre right I'm not scared. Yet.

Posted by subwlf | December 28, 2007 4:15 PM

"It was the first human-to-human case of H5N1 transmission in Pakistan, while others have been confirmed in Indonesia and Thailand ..."

So this was, in fact, *not* the first confirmed human-to-human transmission.

As paranoid as you are about H5N1, ECB, I'd figure you'd be up to speed on your stats. Or at least read a little more closely.

Posted by Matt | December 28, 2007 4:36 PM
About 62% of the cases are fatal.

With a few exceptions, once a disease reaches the pandemic stage, it's much less lethal. It's elementary natural selection. If a virus kills its victims too quickly and too often, it won't be able to propagate itself.

Posted by keshmeshi | December 28, 2007 9:38 PM

"#7 - It's not the amount that catch it that make it scary. Its the amount that survive. About 62% of the cases are fatal.
Ok but youre right I'm not scared. Yet."

Fair enough.That's a good point. I meant to correct my last post anyway ... I meant to say that 343 people have been confirmed to HAVE the bird flu. 212 have died, according to the Reuters article I read this morning and now can't find.

Even if the mortality rate is that high, I'm still not scared. Just because the disease exists and MIGHT someday become contagious, doesn't mean it's worth worrying about if you have a normal immune system.

Posted by Jo | December 28, 2007 10:31 PM

If you want real information about a possible flu pandemic, subscribe at:

Posted by David B. | December 29, 2007 9:33 AM

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