Medical Responses

Influenza Pandemic Mitigation

FEMA: Experts agree that a pandemic is not a matter of "if" but "when." We all expect that our government will produce a "silver bullet" vaccine that will "save the day," but in the past few years when flu vaccine was in short supply it took months before additional supplies could be generated. A similar 1918 Bird Flu pandemic would be more devastating than any terrorist threat or natural disaster could be to our country. I suggest that we should use "the common cold" as an analog for a pandemic and develop countermeasures for it, so if a pandemic does appear the population is able to take their knowledge of the analog "common cold" and utilize it to fight the pandemic. If you follow the work of the late Dr. Elliot C. Dick at Wisconsin State it is plausable that ubiquitous "over the counter" cold remedies may be the frontline defense in the event of a pandemic. With proper education of the population in cold avoidance and these redily available drugs the effects of a pandemic could be mitigated until a vaccine was available. Please look at Dr. Dick's Antarctic study for which I was a participant, he was able to mitigate the spread of the "common cold" using iodine impregnated Kleenex's. It would benefit all of us to agressively attack the "common cold" and hopefully prepare us for any future pandemic



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Idea No. 1147