Still only seven confirmed deaths.
Of course, very FEW deaths are tested for type of flu... i've never done it in the course of my career (nor heard of it being done on a first hand basis, although of course i read about it.)
The Press's role in this is interesting... every year the flu kill thousands of people, but this rarely gets reported... right now, i think the "panic" spread might be a bit beneficial... it keeps people from congregating in large crowds (somewhat) and thus cuts down on any potential spread... this separation of the population has the capacity to potentially stop the pandemic, although this remains to be seen whether it will.
As for the name, H1N1 is distinctly unhandy... the government in its infinite wisdom has decided this is to be applied, so i'll stick to the term "Swine Flu", thank you very much.
There are lots of H1N1 flu strains, and only a few Swine Flu strains, so "Swine Flu" seems a bit more specific than H1N1... despite the pronouncements of Dr. Anthony Fauci et al.
As for the spread of the illness: this follows one well known pattern of an epidemic: the initial cases are bad, but followup infections are less so. For instance, in outbreaks of Ebola in Africa, the initial death rate of infected persons was something like 95%, but by the time the 3rd person in the chain was infected, it had dropped to 30-40%.
If we project this to Swine Flu Mexico: initial death rate among the infected was 5-10%... by the time it spreads the death rate could be very low - unless, of course, it mutates again which the virologists are very nervous about.
BTW, the Mexican Swine Flu variant does NOT seem to have the same genome as the 1918 variant (according to what i've read.)
< Message edited by rtrapasso -- 5/2/2009 2:39:27 AM >