The CDC H1N1 flu site reads:
“… tracking of 2009 H1N1 hospitalizations and deaths will not be the same after August 30, 2009.
In an effort to add additional structure to the national 2009 H1N1 reporting, new case definitions for influenza-associated hospitalizations and deaths were implemented on August 30, 2009.
The new definitions allow states to report to CDC hospitalizations and deaths (either confirmed OR probable) resulting from all types of influenza, not just those from 2009 H1N1 flu.
1. Influenza and pneumonia syndrome hospitalizations and deaths may be an overestimate of actual number of flu-related hospitalizations and deaths, but CDC believes influenza and pneumonia syndromic reports are likely to be a more sensitive measure of flu-associated hospitalizations and deaths than laboratory confirmed reports during this pandemic.
However, the syndromic reports of all hospitalizations and deaths recorded as either influenza or pneumonia will mean that the case counts are less specific than before and will include cases that are not related to influenza infection.”
DECLARATION OF A NATIONAL EMERGENCY WITH RESPECT TO THE 2009 H1N1 INFLUENZA PANDEMIC
– – – – – – –
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA A PROCLAMATION
On April 26, 2009, the Secretary of Health and Human Services (the “Secretary”) first declared a public health emergency under section 319 of the Public Health Service Act, 42 U.S.C. 247d, in response to the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus.
The Secretary has renewed that declaration twice, on July 24, 2009, and….
…October 1, 2009. In addition, by rapidly identifying the virus, implementing public health measures, providing guidance for health professionals and the general public, and developing an effective vaccine, we have taken proactive steps
to reduce the impact of the pandemic and protect the health of our citizens. As a Nation, we have prepared at all levels of government, and as individuals and communities, taking unprecedented steps to counter the emerging pandemic.
Nevertheless, the 2009 H1N1 pandemic continues to evolve.
The rates of illness continue to rise rapidly within many communities across the Nation, and the potential exists for the pandemic to overburden health care resources in some localities.
Thus, in recognition of the continuing progression of the pandemic, and in further preparation as a Nation, we are taking additional steps to facilitate our response.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including sections 201 and 301 of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) and consistent with section 1135 of the Social Security Act (SSA), as amended (42 U.S.C. 1320b-5), do hereby find and proclaim that, given that the rapid increase
in illness across the Nation may overburden health care resources and that the temporary waiver of certain standard Federal requirements may be warranted in order to enable U.S. health care facilities to implement emergency operations plans, the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic in the United States constitutes a national emergency.
Accordingly, I hereby declare that the Secretary may exercise the authority under section 1135 of the SSA to temporarily waive or modify certain requirements of the Medicare, Medicaid, and State Children’s Health Insurance programs and of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act Privacy Rule throughout the duration of the public health emergency declared in response to the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic.
In exercising this authority, the Secretary shall provide certification and advance written notice to the Congress as required by section 1135(d) of the SSA (42 U.S.C. 1320b-5(d)).
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-third day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.
From the LA Times: Forget the rush on that H1N1 swine flu vaccine; 62% of Americans have no intention of getting it anyway
This morning comes word from a new ABC News/Washington Post poll that almost four parents out of 10 do not believe the vaccine is safe and have no intention of allowing their children to receive it.
More than 60% of adults say they have no intention of getting the vaccine either.
Using an open-ended question, the poll also found the overwhelming reason for rejecting the vaccine this year despite federal warnings and mounting concern about the illness’ seriousness was concern about side effects and disbelief in its safety, especially suspicions that it has been inadequately tested. Other reasons included general ignorance and a belief the illness was probably less serious than the danger of the vaccine.
So much for the persuasive powers of the U.S. federal government. Think about that for a minute: A whopping majority of Americans (62%) would rather risk illness than believe in their government’s urgings of necessity and safety.
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