Thursday, April 30, 2009

Swine flu virus pandemic alert now on phase 5

The Swine flu virus problem is not slowing down. Number of confirmed cases increased rapidly across the world that force the World Health Organization (WHO) to raised its pandemic alert to 5.

The 2009 H1N1 virus claimed more than 150 deaths and 2,500 illnesses in Mexico. There are also 148 confirmed cases in nine countries. Germany and Austria became the latest European countries to report swine flu cases.

WHO urges different countries to make necessary health security measure to combat this outbreak.

Checkout below The World Health Organization’s Pandemic Influenza Phases

Phase 1 – No viruses circulating among animals have been reported to cause infections in humans.

Phase 2 – An animal influenza virus is considered a potential pandemic threat because the virus circulating among domesticated or wild animals already causes infection in humans.

Phase 3 – An animal-to-animal or human-to-animal influenza resassortant virus has caused intermittent cases or small clusters of disease in humans, but has not resulted in human-to-human transmission that could trigger community-level outbreaks.

Phase 4 – There is sustained human-to-human transmission of an animal-to-animal or human-to-animal influenza reassortant virus that could trigger community-level outbreaks. The WHO said that this stage indicates a significant increase in the risk for a pandemic, but it does not necessarily suggest that a pandemic will inevitably occur.

Phase 5 – There is human-to-human virus transmission in at least two countries in one WHO region. The WHO said this phase strongly signals the imminence of a pandemic.

Phase 6 – This stage indicates that a global pandemic is underway. There are widespread community-level outbreaks in at least another country in a different WHO region. This is in addition to the criteria prescribed in Phase 5.

Post-peak Period – Under this phase, pandemic disease levels will appear to be decreasing, but it will remain unsure whether additional pandemic waves will occur.

Post-pandemic period – The pandemic virus level will be similar to that of a seasonal influenza A virus. However, the WHO suggests that surveillance should be maintained and pandemic preparedness and response plans should be updated. A recovery phase and evaluation should likewise ensue.

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