August 25th, 2009

Up to Half of U.S. Population Could Get Swine Flu

By Kelley Luckstein

As Students Head Back to School, White House Report Warns of Dire H1N1 Scenarioclassrooms_swine-flu

 

Thirty to 50 percent of the entire U.S. population could be infected with swine flu this fall and winter, according to a report from the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.

 

As many as 1.8 million people may end up in the hospital, and 30,000 to 90,000 could die, with a concentration among children and young adults, the presidential panel of the nation's leading scientists said today in outlining what it called a plausible scenario. That's more than twice the annual average of deaths typically associated with the seasonal flu, and those occur mainly in people older than 65.

 

The report says this swine flu is a "serious threat to our nation and the world." Because it's a new strain of the flu, people do not have a built-in immunity. Many swine flu experts view the numbers as reasonable.  "This looks like reasonable estimates and consistent with how pandemic viruses act," said Greg Poland of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

 

ABC by David Kerley, 08/24/2009

Tags: H1N1, Infectious Diseases, swine flu

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