The world is ever smaller. Flu strains incubating in China can be in New York or LA or DC in the span of a day. This is a world in which an incurable bacterial disease, spread by a tiny insect native to Asia, decimates the citrus crop in Florida.
This might ruffle a few feathers with the tourism board, but aside from practicing proactive hygiene and other food safety measures, here are my top 10 things to avoid in Shanghai as a traveler during the recent avian flu outbreak
A catchy headline will often evoke thoughts of a loss or major disaster, and we are hounded regularly by information overload that seems ever escalating in exigency. There is a lot of coverage of potential environmental disasters associated with global climate change, but are the fears justified?
In a serious epidemic, people facing decisions that may have life or death consequences will need to trust their information sources. If health officials and the media lose their credibility, it may be impossible to recover.
The risks to world health from research to make an extraordinarily lethal avian flu virus contagious in humans have finally caught everyone's attention after months of warnings from us and many other experts.
Everyone recognizes the raw power that pandemics have to sweep through human populations and seemingly kill indiscriminately. Yet, given the importance of these events, large questions remain remarkably opaque.
What, I've been wondering, do the real flu bloggers -- who don't even accept advertising on their sites, lest an ad for Tamiflu sap pop up next to a story on antivirals -- think of Contagion's greedy Alan Krumwiede?
So far, only thousands of people have died from swine flu. Unless we radically change the way chickens and pigs are raised for food, though, it may only be a matter of time before a catastrophic pandemic arises.