Friday, September 30, 2005

When Jiblog talks, people listen

Okay, maybe I give myself undeserved credit with that title. Regardless, WHO is starting to see my line of thought on the Avian flu:
The United Nations health agency warned against "scaremongering" over an expected global flu pandemic, a day after one of its officials said it could claim 150 million lives.

Dick Thompson, spokesman for the World Health Organization's (WHO) anti-flu operations, said it is nearly impossible to predict the death toll of a global crisis that experts fear could be fueled by Asia's bird flu outbreak.

People should be wary of any figure they hear, because all are based on "guesswork," he said.

"We can't be dragged into further scaremongering," Thompson told reporters.

Good. I'm glad to see a little bit of sense breaking out. Thompson needs to have a little talk with his own organization on this topic, though. As the article indicates, yesterday a WHO official said that the avian flu could kill between 5 million and 150 million people. If that is the most accurate estimate you can give, then you shouldn't even make the estimate because it's just a guess. Ask New Orleans and Louisiana officials where death count guesstimates get you.

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