The Itchy, Achy, Sneezy – and Sinking – Feeling

Wednesday evening on the Hugh Hewitt show Hugh started to discuss a report from the World Health Organization (WHO) that was projecting as many as 50,000 deaths in the United Kingdom from the avian flu (or “bird” flu). Hugh thought those numbers sounded awfully high and wondered what people knew about this. During the time I was listening it didn’t appear that the callers were much more informed than the host.

You might want to get your barf bags ready, folks.

It’s not my style or mission on this blog to promote panic or to breathlessly sensationalize serious topics, but in my other life (“The Day Writer,” if you will) I recently edited an article by two very credible people in their respective fields on the potential impact of a bird flu pandemic. One of these people, in fact, is Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy and associate director of the Department of Homeland Security’s National Center for Food Protection and Defense. Dr. Osterholm and other disease experts around the world believe conditions are right for a bird flu pandemic that, if it occurred, would kill tens of millions of people around the world, and a projected 1.7 million in the United States.

Tsunami? Gesundheit!