Saturday, December 19, 2009

H1N1: Going, going, gone!

According to the latest statistics published by the Public Health Agency of Canada, H1N1 is almost a thing of the past.  The number of reported outbreaks has crashed faster than the stock market last year.  During the latest week for which data are available, there were 28 reported outbreaks of which 27 were in Quebec and 1 in New Brunswick.  The 28 outbreaks represents a drop of about 95% compared to the peak reached about 5 weeks earlier.

The number of new confirmed cases of H1N1, as tested in provincial labs, in down by about 96% from the peak in early November.  Recently, the numbers have fallen by more than half in each week.  Check it out
  • Oct 24:   2,880
  • Oct 31:   4,802
  • Nov 7:     6,151
  • Nov 14:   6,007
  • Nov 21:   3,725
  • Nov 28:   1,764
  • Dec 5:       687
  • Dec12:      260
The cumulative number of deaths from H1N1 so far have been 397 as of December 17.  That's 397 people in 9 months.  Remember that the garden-variety flu kills roughly 4,000 Canadians each year.  It turns out that H1N1 wasn't so nasty after all.  Thanks be to God!

You'll notice, however, that the mainstream media isn't talking about the demise of H1N1.  They were only interested in the story while cases were rising and panic was gripping the country.  Now that the worst is far behind us, they won't admit their exaggerations nor will they inform people that it's safe to come out of their bunkers.  It's comforting to know that when the world is coming to an end because of some killer virus, you can always rely on the media to sensationalize first, and ask questions later (or never).

The good hygiene habits that we've learned during this episode should be maintained throughout our entire lives.  Hygiene is a good thing.  But don't let fears of the H1N1 virus spoil your Christmas celebrations.

Take care!