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fluwikiest Quotes from Officials and Experts about BF Pandemic Possibility (Taken from news articles between February and March 2006):

I found that this list of quotes (updated from my earlier one) has a big impact on some people who are in denial that there is a significant proabability of a pandemic in the near future. Some people just read news headlines and not the entire article, thus missing the entire message. Hopefully this will get the point across. Pass it on to those in the hopes that it will get them to prep!

Quotes from Officials and Experts about BF Pandemic Possibility (Taken from news articles between February and March 2006):

1) March 3 (Reuters) - Chinese Vice-Premier Hui Liangyu has warned that China could see more human cases of bird flu during the spring season when migratory birds return, increasing the risk of spreading the virus. http://

To at least one expert, the Chinese statement sounded like a hint that avian flu in China is more widespread than the government has been acknowledging. “Many of us believe that this type of discussion by someone as high as the vice premier really indicates that this situation is already occurring,” said Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, director of the University of Minnesota Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, publisher of the CIDRAP Web site. http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/co…r0206avian.html

2) U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Michael Leavitt said on March 6 that, “The H5N1 virus has continued to [evolve] over the past 18 months. We continue to monitor its evolution.” Leavitt said. “We will have seed viruses reflecting this drift that can be quickly available for vaccine testing and production.” http://usinfo.state.gov

3) Dr. Niman says recombination has been steadily occurring and this Spring we might be presented with some nasty consequences. http://www.recombinomics.com

4) Masato Tashiro, director of the Department of Viral Diseases and Vaccine Control at the National Institute of Infectious Diseases in Tokyo, warned that cases in which the virus transmitted from birds to humans had begun to rise recently and human-to-human virus transmissions are likely to be seen in the near future. “Avian-human transmission happens sporadically, but the number of cases are increasing,” Tashiro said, “Flu viruses are constantly undergoing mutations, which could result in human-to-human virus transmissions, which is the worst case scenario.” Tashiro added that an avian flu case needs to be contained within three weeks. After three weeks, the infection will accelerate to the extent that makes it difficult to contain. - March 2006 http://www.taipeitimes.com

5) “Only two mutations are needed for it to become easily transmissible among humans,” thus sparking a pandemic in which millions of people could die, David Nabarro, the world body’s coordinator on avian influenza, told Portuguese newspaper Expresso in February 2006. http://news.xinhuanet.com

6) John Oxford, Professor of Virology at Barts, claims the likelihood of a human avian flu pandemic was “high and within a span of, say, 18 months”. -Feb 2006 http://www.24dash.com

7) “Still, epidemiologists have been stunned by the rapid advance of the disease. ‘’The virus is moving quite substantially into new locations,” said David Nabarro, the official responsible for coordinating the UN response to avian and human influenza. ‘’The truth is, this virus is undergoing changes. This warning that nature is giving us has to be heeded.” –Feb 2006 http://www.boston.com

8) From the same article: ‘’The danger is grave, the threat is real,” said Dr. Albert Osterhaus, a virologist at the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam, head of the Netherlands National Influenza Center, and one of Europe’s top virus hunters.” Another pandemic is probable, not just possible. It’s only a matter of time,” he said in a telephone interview. ‘’Whether [the H5N1] virus will be the basis of the next pandemic is impossible to say. But the virus is already highly pathogenic.” -Feb 2006

9) “One amino-acid replacement in the genome remains to make the virus transferable from human to human,” said Dmitry Lvov, the director of a virology research institute at the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences….”Lvov said the pandemic virus could strike at any moment, and would most likely come from China, leading to tens of millions of human deaths, or one third of the global population. He added quarantine measures could delay the pandemic for a few days but not prevent it, and that vaccination would not stop people getting sick.” –March 8, 2006 http://en.rian.ru

10) Reports that cats have contracted bird flu could mean the virus is adapting to mammals and poses a potentially higher risk to humans, a World Health Organisation official says. Michael Perdue, a scientist with the organisation’s global influenza program, said “If it is true, it would imply the virus has changed significantly.” –March 7, 2006 http://msnbc.msn.com/id/11710674/

Also on the same note…

In Germany, Agriculture Minister Horst Seehofer said on March 7 that the discovery of the dead cats a week after the first feline infection in Germany signalled a heightened risk of infection for humans. “This means that the virus is not confined to a single case of a mammal but has spread to several cases. Therefore, bird flu has clearly moved closer to humans,” he told Bayerischer Rundfunk radio. http://en.chinabroadcast.cn/706/200…9/189@59646.htm

11) The U.N. agency met in Geneva to discuss global efforts to prepare in case bird flu mutates into a form easily passed between humans, potentially triggering a global pandemic. “Dr. Margaret Chan, who is spearheading WHO’s efforts against bird flu, told more than 30 experts that the top priority was to keep the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu from mutating. “Should this effort fail, we want to ensure that measures are in place to mitigate the high levels of morbidity, mortality and social and economic disruption that a pandemic can bring to this world,” she said.” March 6, 2006 http://www.mercurynews.com

12) Bird flu might spread more with the arrival of spring, said the spokesman from the World Health Organization (WHO), Dick Thompson, who added in an interview for a radio station that the risk of humans being infected with the virus is very small. “What worries us,” he said, “is that a mutation of the virus could transform the H5N1 into a human virus.” He “warned that many experts believe there is a strong connection between the weather and the spread of the virus, explaining that cold weather hinders its spreading and warm weather makes it easier.” http://www.daily-news.ro

13) U.S. Health Secretary Michael Leavitt told a Senate committee March 1, 2206 that the H5N1 virus might spread to the U.S. ``soon. The virus’ appearance is ``just a matter of time; it may be very soon, he said in his testimony. http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?…refer=australia

14) `There will be a pandemic sooner or later, Nabarro said during a news conference today at the UN. `It could start any time. We have a virus capable of replicating inside humans. We have a virus that humans are not resistant to. We have a virus about which we don’t understand everything. It is at this stage of a pandemic alert that we have the luxury of being able to be prepared. –March 8, 2006 http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?…top_world_news#

15) “I think it’s within the next six to 12 months,” Nabarro (WHO) told a news conference, “And who knows — we’ve been wrong on other things, it may be earlier.” – March 8, 2006 http://www.cbsnews.com

16) “In 2004 we said it will be an international crisis if we don‘t stop it in Asia, and this is exactly what is happening two years later,” said Joseph Domenech, head of FAO‘s Animal Health Service. “We were asking for emergency funds and they never came. We are constantly late.” –March 6, 2006 http://www.localnewsleader.com/olber…news&id=153308

17) “If we try to contain a pandemic,” said Keiji Fukuda, coordinator of the global influenza program at the World Health Organization, “there really is a very good chance we will fail, that we will not be able to stop it.” He added, “However, there is also a very good chance that if we mount this kind of effort, we may slow down the spread of a pandemic virus early on.” March 10, 2006 http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/03/10/business/flu.php

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