Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Yes, more links - including CDC e-cards (hilarious)

Some links (along with some commentary):
  • CDC urges caution on estimates of H1N1 - A White House panel recently provided modeled estimates that up to 90,000 people could die of H1N1 this season. CDC cautioned against that number, saying that the scenario was unlikely and that it's still working on its own projections. This article also reports that some vaccine may be released early to some high-risk populations.
  • HHS will collect hospital bed data electronically during the H1N1 flu season. This will be done through the HAvBED system that is currently in place due to emergency preparedness measures. It should be interesting to monitor this and see what data this system produces.
  • Schools preparing for H1N1 - Colleges are already being hit by waves of H1N1 now that students are back to campuses. Lower-level schools are preparing to be vaccination clinic sites; according to a National School Boards Association survey, 75% of superintendents surveyed would be willing to host a clinic. And, don't forget, CDC is recommending that schools not close during an outbreak but rather remain open and mitigate the spread of the virus.
  • Some H1N1 vaccine will be available as early as mid-September, says CDC's National Center for Immunizations and Respiratory Disease. (I can hear my colleague on a conference call discussing the implications of this as I write!) This was one of the recommendations put out by the White House Council of Advisors on Science and Technology earlier this summer. See all the recommendations here - they're quite interesting.
  • H1N1 on social media - Public health, meet the 21st century! CDC is keen on keeping the public aware of public health goings on through various social media outlets.
    1. CDC has a Facebook page that includes periodic updates on recent findings & news.
    2. CDC also has several different Twitter accounts: CDC_eHealth (general social media), CDCemergency (emergency updates), and CDCflu (seasonal and H1N1 influenza updates).
    3. Other social media outlets include YouTube, Flickr, MySpace, and others.
    4. Check out these CDC e-cards - they're hilarious. Everything from creating a healthy home, thanking someone for their support as they become seizure-free (seriously), and Valentine's Day injury prevention tips (yeah, seriously).

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