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What's in the news: Sep. 18: The latest on the H1N1 flu in Canada

Will the H1N1 flu vaccine be available too late to protect some Canadians? [Toronto Star]

On the bright side, it appears that one dose of the vaccine, as opposed to the two doses that were inefficiently predicted to be required, will be sufficient to confer protection. [MedPage Today] [NEJM study] [Another NEJM study] [And yet another NEJM study]

Dr Kumanan Wilson, the Canada Research Chair in Public Health Policy, at the University of Ottawa, discussed why young Canadians don't want the vaccine. [Globe and Mail]

The current issue of the Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases & Medical Microbiology has several articles on the H1N1 flu of interest to clinicians, including one on treating kids, one on what we've learned so far about the pandemic virus, and one about the work that went into preparing for this outbreak. See the journal's TOC here.

The hot topic this week is the story out of Manitoba about accusations that Health Canada shipped body bags to First Nations reserves in preparation for this fall or winter's second wave of the flu. Federal health minister Leona Aglukkaq, an Inuit from Nunavut, is on the hot seat and has promised an investigation, while a Health Canada bureaucrat denied the shipment had anything to do with the flu. [Canadian Press] The story sure looks bad for Health Canada, which earlier this year delayed sending alcohol-based hand disinfectant gel to Manitoba reserves because of concerns in Ottawa that people there would try to eat the gel to get drunk. "The discussion was with the best interests of our clients in mind," Anne-Marie Robinson, the assistant deputy minister of the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch of the federal health ministry, said at the time. [Canadian Medicine]

A second case of drug-resistant H1N1 flu was identified in Canada. The first was in Quebec; this one is in Alberta. [Canadian Press]

New research has revealed some bad news: the H1N1 flu virus is contagious longer than was previously thought. Quebec researchers determined that 15% of patients infected with the H1N1 strain were still contagious on the eighth day of their infection, but that no one was contagious on the eleventh day. [Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec news release]

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2 comments:

  1. Purley Quirt (aka Sharon )18 September, 2009 10:23 AM

    Excellent overview, Sam.

    This referenced material from your listings stands out for me:

    http://www.pulsus.com:80/journals/toc.jsp?origPg=toc.jsp&sCurrPg=journal&jnlKy=3&fold=Current%20Issue&&HCtype=Physician

    Influenza mixes its pitches: Lessons learned to date from the Influenza A (H1N1) pandemic
    DN Fisman, KB Laupland

    Delete
  2. Florida19 September, 2009 4:36 PM

    good blog, good reference....very much

    Delete