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Published on October 10, 2007

Author: Misree

Source: authorstream.com

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Caught Unawares:  Caught Unawares The risk of being unprepared to listen Joan Deppa, Ph.D., Associate professor S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications Syracuse University, Syracuse NY 13244-2100 Jadeppa@syr.edu July 13, 2005 Upstate NY SRA Symposium The Syracuse Technology Garden Crises:  Crises Common themes:  Common themes Warnings and/or early signs of risk Delay and/or denial by authorities Actions by ordinary people, some heroic SARS: first pandemic of 21st c.:  SARS: first pandemic of 21st c. Spread to 29 countries Caused about 8,000 cases Led to 774 deaths Most cases and all deaths were adults 50% of victims were infected in hospitals 21% of victims were healthcare workers Guangzhou, China:  Guangzhou, China November 23, 2002 WHO officials receive clues that an unusual respiratory disease is emerging in Guangdong province. Dr. Klaus Stohr, head of the WHO influenza team, later recalls how a health official from the province spoke about a highly infectious respiratory disease that was causing deaths and making health care workers sick as well. Canadian Broadcasting Corp. GPHIN translates a headline:  GPHIN translates a headline The Global Public Health Intelligence Network (GPHIN), developed by Health Canada in collaboration with WHO, is a secure Internet-based multilingual early-warning tool that continuously searches global media sources such as news wires and web sites to identify information about disease outbreaks and other events of potential international public health concern. GPHIN is one of the most important sources of informal information related to outbreaks. More than 60% of the initial outbreak reports come from unofficial informal sources, including sources other than the electronic media, which require verification. GPHIN translates a headline:  GPHIN translates a headline The link provided led to this Website. (Later, the CBC will translate):  (Later, the CBC will translate) Guangzhou, China:  Guangzhou, China January 3, 2003 The daily newspaper for Heyuan City reports that two people had been diagnosed with atypical pneumonia on December 15. It says people in the city have begun to “crazily purchase” antibiotics because of rumors about the spreading of an unknown virus. The reporter checks with the city’s Center for Disease Control and is reassured that there is no unknown virus . Guangzhou, China:  Guangzhou, China January 5, 2003 Two days later a reporter for the New Express in Guangzhou follows up by interviewing Dr. Yilong Wu, head of the No. 3 hospital of Zongshan University, who says that atypical pneumonia is not infectious. Toronto & Vancouver, Canada:  Toronto & Vancouver, Canada January 2003 Chinese-language newspapers in Canada carry stories about the strange respiratory disease in China. Pharmacists in Vancouver report customers buying surgical masks to send to family members overseas. Toronto & Vancouver, Canada:  Toronto & Vancouver, Canada January 2003 Toronto's Sing Tao newspaper asks: “What's to stop that epidemic from coming to Canada on a plane?” Guangzhou, China:  Guangzhou, China Unpublished WHO data: “a second wave of disease with amplified transmission to health workers began occurring during the first 10 days of February” David Heymann World Health Organization ProMED-mail A free, early alert, global electronic surveillance system for the detection and communication of outbreaks.:  ProMED-mail A free, early alert, global electronic surveillance system for the detection and communication of outbreaks. Date: 10 Feb 2003 From: Stephen O. Cunnion, MD, PhD, MPH International Consultants in Health, Inc. Member ASTM&H, ISTM This morning I received this e-mail and then searched your archives and found nothing that pertained to it. Does anyone know anything about this problem? Have you heard of an epidemic in Guangzhou? An acquaintance of mine from a teacher's chat room lives there and reports that the hospitals there have been closed and people are dying. Two other people contacted ProMED that same day with similar news. Six subsequent e-mail posts detailed the Guangdong Province, China, pneumonia outbreak. Guangzhou, China:  Guangzhou, China THE AP (and others) REPORT Travelers wearing masks wait outside a train station in Guangzhou, southern China, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2003 after a virus outbreak. An unidentified pneumonia virus has killed five people and left hundreds hospitalized in southern China while rumors of a surging death toll prompted frightened residents to stock up on antibiotics. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu) Guangzhou, China:  Guangzhou, China NEW CHINA NEWS AGENCY Guangzhou, 11 February: The municipal people's government of Guangzhou says an outbreak of atypical pneumonia in the city in southern China is now under control. Monitored by the BBC Guangzhou to Hong Kong:  Guangzhou to Hong Kong Feb. 15, 2003: A man, known as patient A, from Guangdong province develops symptoms of SARS. He travels to Hong Kong to visit family. Feb. 21, 2003: Patient A checks into a hotel. He infects 12 other people in the same hotel. Investigators say these patients in turn spread the illness to others in Hong Kong, Vietnam, Singapore, Ireland, Germany and Canada. Feb. 22: Patient A is hospitalized in Hong Kong. He dies the next day. Four hospital workers and two of his family members become ill. One family member dies. NPR Hong Kong to Canada:  Hong Kong to Canada March 5, 2003: A 78-year-old woman who had traveled to Hong Kong in February dies in Toronto. Initially, her death is blamed on cardiac arrest. NPR Toronto, Canada:  Toronto, Canada March 7, 2003 The woman’s son, Chi Kwai Tse, 44, arrives at Scarborough Grace Hospital emergency room with severe symptoms. Doctors are stumped. Nurse Agnes Wong remembers something she read in a Chinese paper. "I read another story about a young family in Hong Kong. They took a trip back to Mainland China and then the father got sick, the daughter got sick and then eventually at the end of the trip two family members died. So that is really sad and very unusual. That stayed with me." Canadian Broadcasting Corp. Toronto, Canada:  Toronto, Canada Agnes Wong wonders if this case was caused by the same agent. She calls the night nurse at Scarborough Hospital and asks her to check whether anyone in the family had traveled to Hong Kong or China. When the night nurse calls back, she says the patient’s mother had traveled to Hong Kong and come back ill. “So I told them to notify the physician. It's just somehow I made the connection, maybe it's a nursing instinct. Maybe it's sixth sense.” Canadian Broadcasting Corp. Toronto, Canada:  Toronto, Canada Health Update SARS: Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome On March 14, 2003, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care alerted health care providers about four cases of atypical pneumonia resulting in two deaths within a single family in Toronto. These cases provided an epidemiological link to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in Ontario.. GPHIN II, November 17,2004:  GPHIN II, November 17,2004 Ted Turner and Sam Nunn through the Nuclear Threat Initiative finance expansion of the program The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports: The new network will search for reports of diseases and other health hazards in six languages --- English, French, Russian, Arabic, Spanish and Chinese --- instead of just English and French as it did before. And it will do it around the clock, alerting health officials to unusual health-related events from Mongolia to Madagascar. China in denial over foot and mouth cull Attempt to hide slaughter echoes response to bird flu and Sars:  China in denial over foot and mouth cull Attempt to hide slaughter echoes response to bird flu and Sars By Jonathan Watts in Dabailou village Tuesday May 24, 2005 Guardian In the idyllic setting of the Beijing countryside a short drive north of the Great Wall, a secret slaughter is taking place. Hundreds, possibly thousands, of cows have been killed in Dabailou village since the start of the month in a frantic attempt to stem one of China's worst foot and mouth disease scares.But instead of warning the nation's farmers and turning the village into a quarantine area, the authorities have mounted a botched attempt to cover up the news. Flu in wild birds sparks fears of mutating virus Experts pressure China for samples that can be analysed. Nature 435, (2 June 2005):  Flu in wild birds sparks fears of mutating virus Experts pressure China for samples that can be analysed. Nature 435, (2 June 2005) The deaths in China of more than 1,000 migratory birds from the flu strain H5N1 has left experts struggling to square the outbreak with their knowledge of the virus. At the same time, rumours are beginning to circulate that humans in the region have also fallen victim to the disease ム although official sources have so far denied this. Flu in wild birds sparks fears of mutating virus Experts pressure China for samples that can be analysed. Nature 435, (2 June 2005):  Flu in wild birds sparks fears of mutating virus Experts pressure China for samples that can be analysed. Nature 435, (2 June 2005) The H5N1 strain has killed at least 53 people in Asia since late 2003, and is seen as one of the prime candidates for sparking a human pandemic. Migratory birds can act as carriers of flu, but their role in spreading highly dangerous strains such as H5N1 remains a matter for debate. Until the latest outbreak, only a handful of migratory birds were known to have died from H5N1. This led some experts to suggest that the migrants are asymptomatic carriers of the virus, causing the occasional outbreak among poultry populations along their migration routes. Crises:  Crises

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