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 level 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.
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