The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been playing games with the press by changing the way it has reported Swine Flu deaths and hospitalizations. The impression given was that swine flu is nowhere near as dangerous as other countries believe – nations that used quarantines, for example.
The original reporting of swine flu estimated all cases. That was then changed to hospitalized cases. In early September deaths and hospitalizations prior to 9/1/09 were excluded from reports in a “reset.” Recently, most of the hospitalized cases were eliminated from totals because suddenly they were not applicable.
The truth can sometimes even be found in reports by the Associated Press, as the following dispatch reveals:
LONDON – Health experts say extraordinary measures against swine flu — most notably quarantines imposed by China, where entire planeloads of passengers were isolated if one traveler had symptoms — have failed to contain the disease. Despite initially declaring success, Beijing now acknowledges its swine flu outbreak is much larger than official numbers show.
China’s official count of nearly 70,000 reported illnesses with 53 deaths is dwarfed by estimates of millions of cases with nearly 4,000 deaths in the United States, a nation with about a third of China’s population. Dr. Michael O’Leary, WHO’s top representative in China, says there has been a dramatic spike in Chinese swine flu cases recently and those reported by the government are only “minimum numbers.”
“We have new cases occurring all the time,” he told The Associated Press last week. “There’s always more deaths than we could possibly know about.”
So, the argument is that the United States has about 80 times as many swine flu deaths as China, which has four times the population, and that means that the Chinese authorities are hiding the deaths – not that quarantines work?
We have made no effort on a federal level to contain this disease, and it has been the CDC hiding deaths by misleading the press and changing report methods that is at blame. It is reasonable to say our government has caused unnecessary deaths, and the government of China has acted for the safety of its citizens.
The question is why? The only answer is protecting the economy from the results of less shopping because people are concerned about catching a sometimes fatal disease. Remember “Jaws?” Don’t close the beaches because it will hurt tourism.