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WHO Overreacts?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
So, now that the war for Iraq is "over", all media attention is being focussed on SARS. This has only been helped by recent WHO pronouncements about Toronto and Beijing.

Current estimated infection figures suggest that 3,000 people in the world are infected with this disease. In a population of approx 6bn.

Additionally figures for Toronto suggest that there are 150 infected people, in a population of 6m.

So, are the WHO overreacting? As a conseqence are the media reporting in an hysterical manner? And are politicians going to overreact themselves as a result?

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think the WHO are being extra cautious to help contain the spread of the disease. And yes, some people are going overboard. But then there is a popular fascination with such issues. Remember the amount of column inches- not to mention films or books- devoted to Ebola, a virus that has never spread easily but that due to its horrifying effects is one of the most feared and talked about.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Erring on the side of caution I think - remember the Spanish Flu? The WHO are arguably trying to learn the lessons of history...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Re: WHO Overreacts?
    Originally posted by Man Of Kent

    So, are the WHO overreacting? As a conseqence are the media reporting in an hysterical manner? And are politicians going to overreact themselves as a result?

    The WHO may be overreacting, but better safe than sorry. This is quite a contagious disease with a mortality rate of approximately 4% (nowhere near as nasty as a hypothesised smallpox outbreak, but still quite dangerous), so you can understand them being cautious.

    As for the media, they will of course overreact if they think it will win them more readers/viewers, and politicians will overreact if they think it will win them more votes. So yes, politicians probably are going to overreact.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Good time to buy shares on surgical masks companies methinks.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    .
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I have mixed feeling about whether they over reacted or not. A few people who were supposed to be quaranteened (spelling sorrry) left the containment area and went on the Toronto subway. They were contagious at the time and the virus can live on any surface they touched or coughed on for 24 hours.

    For once, America won't be the focus of someone's anger because our Center For Disease Control said Toronto is safe to travel to.

    I'd rather we'd error on the safe side.

    Since Toronto is a city of 4 million and Canada only has 30 million people in it, this is throwing Canada into a recession.

    On Yahoo:
    Britain, France, Ireland, Australia and Jamaica already have issued warnings similar to the WHO advisory, and the impact was immediate. But the United States has not taken such steps.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Better to be safe than sorry. The potential exposure rate of this virus makes it imperative that it be kept in check.

    Better to overreact, than try and do something after it has got out of hand
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I wouldn't travel to China or Toronto...that's for sure. I'd wait it out.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Agree with the more safe than sorry approach. With the world's media watching them and analyzing everything they do, it does put them under added pressure. They have to be seen to be in control or the hysteria gets worse.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    MRSA infects more people in the UK alone, does that mean that everyone travelling to and fro the UK should be tested?

    What about VRSA?

    How about HIV? Should we be testing for this at our airports?

    Better still TB, which is also mutating?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Man Of Kent
    MRSA infects more people in the UK alone, does that mean that everyone travelling to and fro the UK should be tested?

    What about VRSA?

    How about HIV? Should we be testing for this at our airports?

    Better still TB, which is also mutating?

    TB yes. There should be a screening program for everyone entering this country (I believe that illegal immigrants already are)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Can MRSA VRSA (whatever the hell theyare) HIV be caught without physical contact?
    What about SARS?
    The media hasn't in my humble opinion reported it in a hysterical manner.
    There matter is there is a highly contagious killer disease spreading round the world and unless something is done it will continue, now I'm sorry if this interupted your holiday to China but if I or anyone I knew died because the government couldn't be arsed to quarantine people for a few days, I would be dammed pissed off.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    What about SARS

    You could breathe it in or if someone has touched something and left the virus on it and you touch it...even a day later...you could catch SARS. They know the virus lives at least 24 hours on the surface. I feel sorry for the people in Toronto but WHO was right.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Simbelyne
    TB yes. There should be a screening program for everyone entering this country (I believe that illegal immigrants already are)

    How can illegal immigrants be screened? By their very nature they surely avoid going through the usual customs and border control procedures? :confused:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I can't help but notice that major hype has reached are screens only after western countries started to get effected. The virus has been present in South East Asia since Febuary.

    It's better to be safe that sorry, but while we're at it why don't we try and focus on maleria and other illnesses in the third world which kills millions, yet recieves very little money for research into finding a cure.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Simbelyne
    TB yes. There should be a screening program for everyone entering this country (I believe that illegal immigrants already are)

    Why?

    Why should we single some diseases out but not others?

    As the author above says, little is done to combat malaria, but there are hundreds of other viral infections which we are happy to let into the country, so why single out SARS?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Man Of Kent
    Why?

    Why should we single some diseases out but not others?

    As the author above says, little is done to combat malaria, but there are hundreds of other viral infections which we are happy to let into the country, so why single out SARS?

    The reason many diseases are singled out is because it suits a political agenda. Some newspapers are trying to rally support for the whole anti-immigrant arguement by trying to create a massive hysteria. There has recently been a big fuss made over speculation that many of these people coming into the country may have TB and HIV.

    The big fuss over Sars may just because the whole story of a mass pandemic waiting to happen makes a really good story (even if alot of it is speculation).
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Another statistic
    The reason many diseases are singled out is because it suits a political agenda. Some newspapers are trying to rally support for the whole anti-immigrant arguement by trying to create a massive hysteria. There has recently been a big fuss made over speculation that many of these people coming into the country may have TB and HIV.

    The big fuss over Sars may just because the whole story of a mass pandemic waiting to happen makes a really good story (even if alot of it is speculation).

    Kerching.

    Thank you.

    Media attention is the answer. They are hyping this disease into something it isn't - partly thanks to the WHO pronouncements. SARS is dangerous, no doubt about it, but so are stairs FFS and we don't only build bungalows. DO we?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    In the US, for a very short period of time they were investigating to ensure it wasn't bioterrorism. So that got sars some press too. As it turned out, our preparedness for a bioterrorism attack worked to our advantage.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by pnjsurferpoet
    In the US, for a very short period of time they were investigating to ensure it wasn't bioterrorism. So that got sars some press too. As it turned out, our preparedness for a bioterrorism attack worked to our advantage.

    Of course it did.

    Do you ever feel like a Mushroom PNJ? Cos you certainly like being kept in the dark and being fed on shit... ;)

    Do you really think that your Govt would say anything else?

    Now, Clandestine may be paranoid, but he's right when he suggests that you shouldn't swallow all that you are told. Often there is a reason that your Govt tells you things... so what message does that send? Perhaps that the panic over their bio-terrorism advice was worth it because look - you don't have a major outbreak of SARS - just like most countries in the world, who didn't go to such bio risk lengths ...
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,328 The Mix Honorary Guru
    http://www.cnn.com/2003/SHOWBIZ/Music/04/28/music.clarkson.reut/index.html

    Link to the tons of concerts being canceled....including Elton Jon and Bill Joel.
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