Swine influenza is deservedly the hottest topic in health right now. Things could get hairy. Let’s us all prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
The World Health Organization has declared the swine flu outbreak in North America a “public health emergency of international concern”. The decision means countries around the world will be asked to step up reporting and surveillance of the disease implicated in dozens of human deaths in Mexico and at least 8 non fatal cases in the USA. WHO fears the outbreak could spread to other countries and is calling for a coordinated response to contain it.” – from promedmail.org (27 April 2009)
Particularly if you’re a doctor working in Australia, these guidelines are well worth a look:
- Australian Pandemic Influenza Guidelines 2008 (a pdf document – thanks to 6minutes.com.au)
Here are links to some reliable resources for tracking the Swine Flu Outbreak Online in real-time:
- WHO Swine Influenza – Epidemic and Pandemic Alert and Response (EPR)
- CDC ‘Swine flu’ website
- NEJM H1N1 Influenza Center
- The Lancet: H1N1 Flu Resource Center
- BMJ Best Practice: Swine influenza
- Swine flu H1N1 Google Map
- BBC: Swine flu
It is prudent to act with an increased sense of caution with this current outbreak – the team here at Life in the Fast Lane suggest an immediate hiatus from ‘Pig Kissing Frolicks‘ – at least in the short term…
Life in the Fast Lane ‘swine flu’ posts
- Lessons from 1918
- Swine Flu in ICU
- What do you mean pandemic?
- H1 N1 DON’T PANIC!
- The Two Faces of Swine Flu
Chris is an Intensivist and ECMO specialist at the Alfred ICU in Melbourne. He is also a Clinical Adjunct Associate Professor at Monash University. He is a co-founder of the Australia and New Zealand Clinician Educator Network (ANZCEN) and is the Lead for the ANZCEN Clinician Educator Incubator programme. He is on the Board of Directors for the Intensive Care Foundation and is a First Part Examiner for the College of Intensive Care Medicine. He is an internationally recognised Clinician Educator with a passion for helping clinicians learn and for improving the clinical performance of individuals and collectives.
After finishing his medical degree at the University of Auckland, he continued post-graduate training in New Zealand as well as Australia’s Northern Territory, Perth and Melbourne. He has completed fellowship training in both intensive care medicine and emergency medicine, as well as post-graduate training in biochemistry, clinical toxicology, clinical epidemiology, and health professional education.
He is actively involved in in using translational simulation to improve patient care and the design of processes and systems at Alfred Health. He coordinates the Alfred ICU’s education and simulation programmes and runs the unit’s education website, INTENSIVE. He created the ‘Critically Ill Airway’ course and teaches on numerous courses around the world. He is one of the founders of the FOAM movement (Free Open-Access Medical education) and is co-creator of litfl.com, the RAGE podcast, the Resuscitology course, and the SMACC conference.
His one great achievement is being the father of three amazing children.
On Twitter, he is @precordialthump.