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Swine Flu Cases Mount

Click the image for a map of swine flu cases.

Click the image for a map of swine flu cases.

Swine flu cases are quickly approaching the one thousand milestone in the US as additional swine flu victims also mount in Mexico. The editors of New Scientist have called for a “ flu Manhattan project” in the face of a looming swine flu pandemic, noting the irony that it’s not an Asian bird flu prompting this alarming editorial.

What’s so hard about a swine flu Manhattan project? As usual, the devil’s in the corporate/government details. Preventing a swine flu pandemic can not be done unilaterally. This must be a whole-world effort to combat the next flu pandemic. Naturally, it comes down to dollars and cents, or yuan or whatever currencies we need to spend. Read the New Scientist article for more details.

Why was swine flu so much worse in Mexico?

In Mexico, there are more over the counter options to treat swine flu symptoms. Want antibiotics? No problem. They’re cheap and you don’t need a prescription. Additionally, though there’s a certain levelĀ  of state-run health care in Mexico, many residents aren’t near clinics and don’t have enough money to pay the nominal fee required for swine flu treatment.

This trend of avoiding treatment is exacerbated in the younger generations which were hit hard by swine flu. It’s not that swine flu is uncharacteristically killing the hearty youth, rather they’re avoiding medical help in lieu of home symptom treatment. The only two people to be killed by swine flu in the US were both weakened. One elderly, the other a baby.

The over the counter drugs and the recklessness of Mexican youth alone cannot explain the excessive swine flu deaths in Mexico. Elements of Mexican culture are also to blame. Did you know there are thousands of schools in Mexico without running water and bathrooms? It’s no wonder swine flu spread so quickly and became so deadly. Furthermore, Mexico City is one of the most crowded cities on the planet. Cramped conditions, poor medical policies and antiquated sanitation made (and continue to make) the perfect swine flu storm in Mexico.

Is all of Mexico like that?! No. There are plenty of places where there is no swine flu, like Cabo San Lucas. Why? There are restrooms in Cabo. The tap water is drinkable even by people from the US. And most importantly, it’s a desert… with a lot of tourist money flowing through its infrastructure veins. Who says money doesn’t solve big problems? Slap them. They’re wrong. Money fixes swine flu.

Visit the swine flu tracker swine flu map for the latest on swine flu news.

  1. Dan
    May 8th, 2009 at 03:55 | #1



    This is a dangerous myth to perpetuate – although it is true that if there are complications/secondary infections then antibiotics may be beneficial in combatting this, but influenza itself is a VIRUS and as such antibiotics are ineffective.

    • swine flu tracker
      May 8th, 2009 at 09:51 | #2

      That’s the point of the article. One of the reasons swine flu is so bad in Mexico is because young Mexican adults self-medicate with over the counter drugs, e.g. antibiotics. There is no myth being perpetuated in this article.

  2. May 9th, 2009 at 01:18 | #3

    The elderly, young children and people with chronic illnesses are at greatest risk. Consulting a health care professional is important if you experience severe flu-like symptoms, cause simple antibiotics is not adequate enough to even control H1N1 Flu Virus.

  3. Trent
    May 12th, 2009 at 11:03 | #4

    There are restrooms all around Mexico , and money does not solve everything. If you don’t belive it ask Cancun. There specific areas where poverty is very deep but at the same time there are some others that are so rich. And when you consider not having running whater as a cultural matter you show us that the one without culture is you. If there is no whater that is a matter of economics, a mere money thing.

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