View Full Version : Yes-Its Bird-Flu time again

09-26-2005, 12:37 PM
Another person died from Bird Flu in Jarkata love Jarkata wont be holidaying there again for a while- :(

Huge demand for anti bird flu drug
27 September 2005

Demand for anti bird flu drug Tamiflu is growing so fast the company that supplies it has not been able to keep up with orders.

New Zealanders, particularly travellers and those going on business to Southeast Asia, are seeking their own supplies of the drug as public fears of a global flu pandemic increase.

Bird flu has infected about 112 people and caused 57 deaths in Asia since the end of 2003.

Health experts have warned that, as long as Avian flu exists, there is a risk it could mutate, become highly infectious and eventually transfer from human-to-human.

At the moment Tamiflu is seen as the best way of preventing the spread of the pandemic - in conjunction with measures such as vigilant personal hygiene and avoiding public places.

Yesterday, Roche Products (NZ) Ltd sales and marketing director Stuart Knight said within two days of last week's shipment arriving the company had distributed all its supplies to wholesalers. The next planned delivery was in the first week of October.

Mr Knight said the company had seen a "significant and sustained" increase in demand this year, initially because of the shortage of this winter's influenza vaccine but more recently because of concerns about a flu pandemic. Media coverage of a pandemic had contributed to that.

If demand continued, people wanting Tamiflu could expect to wait up to three months for a prescription to be filled.

Mr Knight said Roche's obligation to fulfil the Government order was not affected by any changes in public demand.

Some pharmacies had run out of Tamiflu and had waiting lists but others still had some supplies.

Chieh Lin Ho, pharmacist at Radius Care 104, in Auckland's Queen Street said in the past two weeks it had sold about 28 packets of Tamiflu compared to one packet for the whole of last year. Most of those buying the drug were travelling to Southeast Asia but one family wanted it "just in case the Avian bird flu hit New Zealand".

Travel Doctor New Zealand managing director Wendy Penno said between 30 and 50 people at its Auckland clinic were on a waiting list for Tamiflu.

A number of companies had sought the drug for staff travelling overseas.

Dr Daniel Wu, of College Hill Doctors in Central Auckland had prescribed Tamiflu for a handful of patients going overseas and said there appeared to be a degree of public panic.

While people at the frontline, such as doctors, nurses and those working in customs needed to make sure they had access to Tamiflu he did not believe the general public needed to "fork out all that money".

"There are other more important things like basic hygiene and avoiding public places. All those things are far more important than having a packet of Tamiflu," he said.

But Dr Jonathan Fox, president of the Royal College of General Practitioners and a Meadowbank GP, did not believe people were panicking, there was simply increased public awareness.

Ministry of Health director of public health Dr Mark Jacobs said it was "entirely appropriate" for some level of concern about the approaching pandemic.

"There's going to be another influenza pandemic. History teaches us that. We don't know if the current bird flu is the start of that, we don't know when it will hit. It could happen soon or it might be years off," Dr Jacobs said.

The ministry was not providing advice to people to buy Tamiflu but they had the right to ask their GP for a prescription for it, he said.

"It is by no means a magic bullet. It hasn't been tested in a pandemic situation before. Obviously there's good evidence it can be of benefit for seasonal influenza," he said.

Dr Jacobs said the best planning in the world would not prevent significant impact to the community during an epidemic. Common sense precautions such as regularly washing hands and staying home would be vital.

About 100 people die from influenza in New Zealand each year.

09-26-2005, 12:54 PM
Last Updated: Monday, 26 September 2005, 08:36 GMT 09:36 UK

Indonesia bird flu toll increases

Indonesia prefers to vaccinate rather than use mass culling
Another two people are confirmed to have died from bird flu in Indonesia, bringing the death toll there to six.
Test results show that both a young girl who died last week and a 27-year-old woman who died on Monday had been exposed to the H5N1 virus.

Several other recent fatalities are being investigated, and about 20 people are in hospital with bird flu symptoms.

The deadly disease has already killed dozens of people across Asia, and led to millions of birds being culled.

There is so far no evidence of human-to-human transmission, but health officials fear that if the virus combines with the human influenza virus, it could become highly infectious and lead to a global flu pandemic.

Laboratory tests

The latest victim - a 27-year-old woman who died on Monday morning - had been hospitalised with bird flu symptoms last week.

Health ministry officials confirmed on Monday that she had died of the disease.

Officials also announced that a five-year-old girl who died last week had succumbed to bird flu.

Principally an avian disease, first seen in humans in Hong Kong, 1997
Almost all human cases thought to be contracted from birds
Isolated cases of human-to-human transmission in Hong Kong and Vietnam, but none confirmed

Q&A: Avian flu

There was initial confusion as to whether she had in fact died of the disease - she was found to be positive for the virus in one test but negative in another - and at one stage officials said that meant she could not be classified as having had bird flu.

But according to the BBC correspondent in Jakarta, Rachel Harvey, they now appear to have changed their minds.

It also seems that a second child, a two-year-old, was buried before samples could be taken for testing to see if she too had bird flu.

'Extraordinary' measures

The first case of human infection in Indonesia was announced in July.

Last week Health Minister Siti Fadila Supari warned that Indonesia could be facing an epidemic, remarks which were later played down by other officials.

But the government is evidently worried. The authorities have already instituted tough new "extraordinary" measures, including the power to force people suspected of having bird flu into hospital.

The WHO has urged countries with infected poultry to use widespread mass culling as the best method of stopping the spread of the disease.

But the government has only carried out limited culling, preferring to vaccinate poultry because of the expense of compensating farmers.

The recent outbreak in Jakarta is causing particular concern because of the close proximity between birds and humans.

Most Indonesian households keep chickens for food or caged birds for pets.

Finding the source of an outbreak is therefore extremely difficult, our correspondent says, and the chances of the virus spreading in a teeming city of more than 15 million people are high.

The government says it expects delivery of 40,000 more doses of the anti-viral drug Tamiflu by the end of this week, with a further 40,000 provided by Australia sometime soon.

03-02-2006, 04:00 AM
Hi friend
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03-02-2006, 04:50 AM
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