Tuesday, March 16, 2010

We got it right this time

Today I took the_weapon to get the latest influenza vaccine that's become available this past week at the local medical centre. For $14 not only does he get increased protection against the (hopefully) upcoming seasonal flu but it also includes the H1N1 Vaccine so he has some protection against swine flu as well.

As a fan of those films where threats to humanity are faced off by steely eyed, squared jawed, well trained and well resourced team of professionals who have plans and contingencies ready to enact at the first sign of a threat. So I was kinda pleased how the health community and the public organised in response to the threat swine flu posed.

I realise its not over yet and some will claim that it was no big deal and we over reacted. To those I offer the following from the latest Australian Influenza report

In 2010, as at 5 March, there have been 50 confirmed cases of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza reported in Australia, bringing the total of confirmed cases to 37,686 since 2009.

Or as more graphically put by the CDC in the United States.
For a parent these are chilling numbers, but they are only numbers. The late epidemiologist Irving Selikoff once referred to a statistic as "people with the tears wiped away." A friend, referring to someone who lost a child, shook his head and just said, "It's off the scale."

Flintheart over on his blog was talking about "The thing is, Stupid only has to win big once, and that's your whole fucking life trashed, right there" I have to say we as a society are doing the stupid when we allow vaccination levels to drop.

I was hearted to hear from the receptionist behind the counter that they had been really busy with people getting vaccinations. There is hope yet for us as a species. Jim Carrey and Jenny McCarthy notwithstanding.


  1. I was chatting with someone from Health Canada the other day RE the Canadian response to H1N1. Over here, everybody was provided a free H1N1 vaccine provided they could jump through the administrative hoops put in place by each state (Feds paid for the vaccine, but the States distributed it).

    Predictably, the media ran parallel scare campaigns. One about how deadly H1N1 is, and another about people waiting for an entire day to get their injection. I waited until a week after the program started, and then managed to get myself and both kids in and out of the vaccination centre within 2 hours.

  2. Being stabbed in the arm with cold dead H1N1 is free through work here. Mind you I was lucky enough to enjoy a week of lying on my back staring at the ceiling courtesy H1N1 last year so if I'm not immune to the bastard by now noone is.

    Great to see the anti-vaccination muppets on the run after Wankfield got cleaned out, even McCarthy's kicked over her soapbox and is backpedalling furiously.