Sunday, April 26, 2009
Robert Gibbs said on Saturday that “the President’s trip to Mexico has not put his health in any danger,” the Associated Press reports. According to reports, Obama was guided through a Mexico City museum by Felipe Solis, who passed away the next day and reportedly had flu-like symptoms.
Spokesman Reid Cherlin says that the White House has been keeping a close eye on the so-called “swine flu,” which has already claimed 81 lives in Mexico, and there are 8 confirmed cases in the U.S. and several dozen more probable ones, including 8 students at a New York City private school. While initially transmitted by pigs, the virus can spread from human to human, raising fears of a flu pandemic.
While so far, all the U.S. cases have been mild, a Reuters dispatch on the potential economic costs cites two 2005 reports that estimate a pandemic could have an immediate cost in the U.S. of upwards of $500 billion dollars.
Anne Schuchat, the Interim Deputy Director for Science and Public Health Program at the Center for Disease Control, said on Saturday that the Obama administration has been briefed on the swine-flu outbreak, and that “leadership is highly engaged.” CDC officials, she said are working closely with Mexico, Canada and WHO representatives and actively looking for new infections in the U.S..
The CDC presently has teams out in Mexico, California and Texas, where Governor Rick Perry has requested the group send 37,430 doses of Tamiflu, an anti-flu medicine that thus far has proven effective against the new strain.
This article was posted: Sunday, April 26, 2009 at 5:01 am