President declares swine flu a national emergency

    The swine flu, or H1N1, is officially on President Barack Obama’s plate, reports The Globe and Mail. He signed documents over the weekend that declared the strain of influenza an emergency, which will allow health professionals and hospitals to respond more quickly and with more resources.

    "The rates of illness continue to rise rapidly within many communities across the nation, and the potential exists for the pandemic to overburden health care resources in some locations," the president wrote in his declaration.
    The announcement was prompted by the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports, which declared that 46 states had cases of that flu and that it was "unprecedented during seasonal flu."

    Over 1,000 people have died from the swine flu and many of them are young people. Fifty-three children have died since August. If the deaths continue to occur at this rate, will be more than the generic flu strain, which normally is responsible for taking 80 childrens’ lives each year on average.
    Nearly 5,000 people have died worldwide from H1N1.

    Among the White House’s efforts to stop the spread of the illness is an initiative to set up tents outside of hospitals in order to keep the H1N1 contained and away from other hospital patients.



    — Whitney Teal




    Here’s more:
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    Is it a cold, flu and H1N1?
    Panel puts rush on vaccines
    South Africa to make its own H1N1 vaccine

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