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The early innings of the novel H1N1 pandemic: Keep your eye on the ball

first_img(CIDRAP Source Osterholm Briefing) – It’s summertime in America, Major League Baseball is about to celebrate its annual All-Star Game—and we are experiencing influenza activity throughout the world, including right here in North America. In my lifetime, a lineup featuring influenza and summer in this country is simply unprecedented, though hardly unexpected.To be sure, the big game will receive substantial media coverage, and I hope my beloved American League and hometown hero Joe Mauer wins the game. But I know the most important story is not on the baseball field. Frankly, it’s barely in the news. And when the novel H1N1 pandemic does gain public attention, a certain word is conveying a dangerous and false sense of safety: mild.Not the 7th-inning stretchBeware. We are in the early innings of this pandemic situation; a lot is yet to unfold. Now is not the time to take our eyes off the ball. I can only hope organizations like yours will use this time to better prepare for what could be a challenging time come this fall.And I also realize how hard that might be, particularly if the public continues to think of the emergence of novel H1N1 as a media event of late April and early May and its continued occurrence as a “mild” pandemic, the term many government and public health officials have used to describe the current situation. Unfortunately, to date the pandemic has been largely mischaracterized in terms of its severity.To its credit, however, the World Health Organization (WHO) has avoided using “mild” to describe the pandemic. In fact, WHO Director-General Margaret Chan has urged the world to see the current illness picture of novel H1N1 as a virus that can cause moderate to severe infections and to anticipate that its clinical spectrum (the full range of symptoms and severity) could substantially worsen with time. And just today, the Obama administration urged the US to plan and prepare, called such work “our shared responsibility,” and said it is working to ready the nation for the “possibility of a more severe outbreak” of the pandemic virus.Still, I worry very much that complacency in the northern hemisphere is replacing some of the over-the-top media coverage of late April/early May and undermining efforts to prepare the world for what I believe could be a very serious 2009-10 winter flu season.Calling it as she sees itNobody has done a better job of trying to understand and explain the disconnect between what is happening now with the novel H1N1 pandemic and the future it holds than Helen Branswell, medical reporter from the Canadian Press. In “Constant use of ‘mild’ to describe swine flu misleading people about threat,” published Jun 28, Branswell details the growing misconception between the reality of this pandemic, what it may hold for the future, and our misunderstanding of its threat. I urge you to read her piece and circulate it to your colleagues and leaders up the management chain who may mistakenly believe the H1N1 problem is over.Branswell nails the issue in her first paragraphs:Officialdom’s mantra about swine flu—”it is overwhelmingly mild”—might seem incongruous if we knew the number of children, teens and young adults in ICU beds right now alive only because a breathing machine has taken over for their ravaged lungs.The heavy reliance on the word “mild” could be creating a false impression of what is actually going on and what the world may face in coming months, some experts worry.Peter Sandman, a risk communications guru from Princeton, NJ, suggests if authorities are trying to ensure people don’t panic about the new H1N1 outbreak, they are concerned about the wrong thing.”In North America, swine flu panic is much rarer than swine flu deaths,” Sandman says. “The problem isn’t panic or even excessive anxiety. The problem is complacency, both about what’s going to happen and about what might happen.”As many of you already know, Peter is the Deputy Editor of the CIDRAP Business Source and truly one of the world’s top risk communication experts. His comments in Branswell’s piece are right on the mark.A picture of what’s to come?Even if nothing changes about the clinical spectrum of this H1N1 infection, think about the impact it’s having on countries like Argentina, Chile, and Australia where it has all but replaced the other two seasonal influenza A strains.The pandemic is stretching the government and medical response capabilities of these southern hemisphere countries in the absence of an effective vaccine. (I will revisit the vaccine issue in detail in an upcoming column, but for now know that I don’t hold out hope that US citizens will receive much pandemic vaccine before the seasonal flu season revisits us.) Argentine financial markets and banks will close tomorrow as part of government efforts to fight an outbreak of novel H1N1. President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has sought to halt the spread of the virus the by closing schools, giving pregnant workers extended leave, and allocating emergency funding. Movie theaters have decided to temporarily shut their doors, while Brazilian airline Gol said on Wednesday it had seen a sharp drop in the number of passengers flying to Argentina.A pandemic virus in its infancyIn just a few months we’ll be entering the 2009-10 influenza season. As you look ahead, consider Branswell’s words:”. . . as a human pathogen this virus is still a baby, despite its rapid global spread. No one knows what it is going to be when it grows up.Some things are clear, though. Since most people seem to have no immunity to the virus —some people over 60 may have some—huge numbers will probably catch this flu over the next couple of years. In a relatively tight time frame, lots of people will come down with the flu—far more than would be seen during a regular flu year.To understand that impact, think back to elementary school arithmetic. If the denominator (the total number of cases) gets substantially bigger, the total number of people falling gravely ill or dying (the numerator) will rise sharply, even if the proportion of severe cases (the percentage) doesn’t change.And sheer numbers could make the outbreak get nasty, fast.I couldn’t have said it better. Even if novel H1N1 doesn’t mutate or reassort between now and the fall in a way that increases its ability to cause more severe disease, we’re in for a serious and real challenge. And that’s before even considering the possibility of the virus developing resistance to our current antiviral flu drugs. Bottom line for your organizationDon’t take a summer vacation from pandemic preparedness and business continuity planning. These next few months are precious. Think about all the things that you learned from your late April and May experience and work like hell this summer to do what you can to fix, upgrade, or replace them with a better response plan for the days ahead. I’m certain you’ll not waste your efforts.last_img read more

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This year’s Days of Croatian Tourism will be held in Hvar

first_imgToday, at the solemn session of the Assembly of the Tourist Board of the City of Hvar, Minister Cappelli presented this year’s destination of the traditional meeting of tourist workers, the event “Days of Croatian Tourism”.The October meeting of tourist workers will be held on the sunniest Croatian island, Hvar, in the town of Hvar, which this year marks 150 years of tourist tradition. Addressing the gathering, Minister Cappelli stated: “The Days of Croatian Tourism are a central place for meeting, education, exchange of knowledge and experiences, which from year to year arouses the growing interest of stakeholders in tourism and related industries. The value of this event, as well as the overall importance of tourism for the development of the country, was recognized by the Government of the Republic of Croatia, which especially directs activities towards the development of continental and island tourism. With the support of the Government and the synergy of public-private partnership, we are working to increase the quality of the tourist offer, increase the income and interest of investors for Croatia, and thus, we are successfully plotting it on the world map of tourist destinations. By choosing Hvar as the flagship of Croatian tourism and one of our most recognizable destinations, we are hosting this year’s Days of Croatian Tourism to pay tribute to their great anniversary. By solemnly celebrating 150 years of tourist tradition, the people of Hvar have shown how good the hosts and organizers are, and I am looking forward to working together to organize another edition of the Croatian Tourism Day. “Days of Croatian Tourism are traditionally organized by the Ministry of Tourism, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce and the Croatian Tourist Board, and every year they gather more than a thousand participants. This year’s program of the Croatian Tourism Day brings a handful of educational lectures, workshops and round tables of leading domestic and international tourism experts, and will traditionally be crowned with awards and recognitions for the best in the actions of the Croatian Tourist Board and Croatian Chamber of Commerce.According to unofficial information, the Days of Croatian Tourism should be held in Slavonia next year.last_img read more

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Justin Kluivert hopes Henrikh Mkhitaryan will stay at Roma amid Arsenal swap deal speculation

first_img Comment Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterFriday 19 Jun 2020 8:16 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link4.3kShares Justin Kluivert hopes Henrikh Mkhitaryan will stay at Roma amid Arsenal swap deal speculation Mkhitaryan would prefer to stay at Roma (Picture: Getty Images)‘He [Mkhitaryan] transfers his experience to the team and certainly to me.‘I look up to a player who has already experienced as much as he has. ‘He has had a great career and seen many big clubs. I can certainly learn from that. ‘We talk a lot anyway because we play in roughly the same positions and he occasionally gives me tips or emphasizes what I do well. ‘I listen to that because he has experienced it all.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalWhen Mkhitaryan was quizzed about his own future earlier this month, he admitted that while his preference is to stay at Roma, he wouldn’t ‘complain’ if he has to return to the Emirates.‘Of course I would like to be at Roma next season, not only next season [but] for another few years,’ Mkhitaryan said in an interview on Futbol with Grant Wahl.‘I’m not complaining, football life changes so quickly so you have to be ready to play wherever you are‘If not in Rome, I’m going to go back and play for Arsenal, if not, I’m going to stay here and play for Rome.’MORE: Dimitar Berbatov fears David Luiz has made ‘one too many’ mistakes at ArsenalMORE: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang apologises to Arsenal fans after Manchester City defeatFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. The two wingers could be trading places (Picture: Getty Images)Justin Kluivert wants Arsenal’s on-loan winger Henrikh Mkhitaryan to stay at Roma next season amid speculation of a potential swap deal between the two players.Mkhitaryan was shipped out on a season-long loan to Italy at the start of the campaign after being deemed surplus to requirements by former Gunners boss Unai Emery.Despite multiple injuries, the 31-year-old has impressed on the pitch, registering six goals and just three assists in 13 Serie A appearances.Reports claim that Arsenal have opened talks with Roma to swap Mkhitaryan for their 21-year-old winger Kluivert in a player-plus-cash deal.ADVERTISEMENTWhen asked about the rumours, the Dutch forward refused to be drawn on his own future, but maintained that he would like to see Roma’s on-loan stars Mkhitaryan and Manchester United’s Chris Smalling remain at the club.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘I’m just happy with his [Mkhitaryan’s] help and hope he and Chris Smalling will stay here after this season,’ Kluivert toldVoetballzone.‘They are top players for us. Advertisementlast_img read more

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Brentford boss Thomas Frank insists Arsenal target David Raya is not for sale

first_imgBrentford boss Thomas Frank insists Arsenal target David Raya is not for sale Comment Frank does not want to lose Raya on top of Watkins and Benrahma (Picture: Getty)Arteta is believed to be a big fan of his compatriot while he has been personally recommended by Arsenal’s goalkeeping coach Inaki Cana, who worked with Raya at Brentford before being poached by the north London club.Raya’s agent previously said he was prepared to do ‘what is necessary’ to secure a transfer this summer, and the onus will now be on the 24-year-old to push for the move and even hand in a transfer request.MORE: Mikel Arteta outlines Arsenal’s transfer plans but avoids Houssem Aouar questionMORE: David Raya to push for Arsenal transfer as Emiliano Martinez nears exitFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. Advertisement The Spaniard is wanted as a replacement for the departing Emiliano Martinez (Picture: Getty)Brentford boss Thomas Frank has made it clear that goalkeeper David Raya will not be allowed to leave the Championship club this summer despite significant interest from Arsenal.The Gunners are on the verge of letting Emiliano Martinez leave the Emirates, with Aston Villa having made a £15million offer for the Argentine who is desperate for more regular game time.Mikel Arteta could not offer Martinez any assurances over his place in the side this coming season despite his heroics after the restart, with Bernd Leno set to continue as the club’s undisputed number one.center_img Martinez is on the verge of joining Villa as he looks for more regular game time (Picture: Getty)That leaves Arsenal in need of a new backup goalkeeper and they have identified Spanish shot-stopper Raya – who counts as being homegrown – as their top target for the role.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTHowever, Brentford have already sold Ollie Watkins to Villa for £28m while star man Said Benrahma is being chased by a host of clubs, with the Championship outfit making it clear that they are not prepared to lose any more players beyond that duo.Asked about players potentially leaving, Frank told reporters at his pre-match press conference on Friday: ‘No doubt that [owner] Matthew Benham and [Co-Directors of Football] Phil Giles and Rasmus Ankerson and I, that’s the good thing, we take the decisions together.‘I said one week ago that if the price is right for Ollie Watkins or Said Benrahma, we are open, because that’s the way football works. The rest are not for sale.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalAsked to clarify if that meant Raya was not for sale, he responded bluntly: ‘I would like to repeat myself. If the price is right for Ollie Watkins and Said Benrahma, then they are for sale. The rest are not for sale.’The news will be a blow to Raya and Arsenal, with the Spaniard having been very keen to make the step up to the Premier League with the Gunners. Metro Sport ReporterFriday 11 Sep 2020 4:23 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link364Shares Advertisementlast_img read more

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HHI Starts Process to Earn Approval on DSME Takeover

first_imgSouth Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) has officially launched the process to gain regulatory approval for its proposed takeover of Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering.The shipbuilding major has submitted a request for the formal approval from the South Korea’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC), as well as from antitrust authorities in China, Kazakhstan and the European Union.Yonhap News Agency cited Hyundai Heavy as saying that it would submit further requests for approval to other countries.In early March 2019, the shipbuilder signed a contract with Korean state lender Korea Development Bank (KDB) to acquire its compatriot DSME. The parties reached a conditional agreement on the transaction in January 2019.Under the deal, KDB would sell its 55.7 percent stake in DSME, that has an estimated value of KRW 2.16 trillion (USD 1.85 billion), to HHI. The bank would transfer its DSME common stock to HHI and buy KRW 1.5 trillion worth of HHI stocks.Furthermore, KDB would consider providing KRW 1 trillion as a financial boost to DSME.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

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Vineyard Wind Faces Headwinds

first_imgThe U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has postponed the issuance of the final Environmental Impact Statement for the Vineyard Wind project in Massachusetts.BOEM informed Vineyard Wind that it is not yet prepared to issue the final Environmental Impact Statement for the 800MW offshore wind project.According to the U.S. developer, changes to the schedule are anticipated as with any project of that scale and complexity.“We understand that, as the first commercial-scale offshore wind project in the US, the Vineyard Wind project will undergo extraordinary review before receiving approvals,” Vineyard Wind stated, emphasizing it remains committed to working with BOEM on delivering the wind farm.Additionally, the Edgartown conservation commission denied the permit for cables that would pass through the Muskeget Channel in a 5-1 vote after fishermen cited potential detrimental marine effects, local media reported.Vineyard Wind planned to begin project construction this year and have the wind farm operational by 2022. The 800MW project will feature MHI Vestas 9.5MW turbines located some 14 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard.last_img read more

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Cardinals Successful In Home Tourney

first_imgSLS vs St Lawrence – St. Lawrence won 13-9.Cardinals Scoring Breakdown.  Conner Miles – 5 pts, Preston Conway – 2 pts, Eli Weiler – 2 pts.Courtesy of Cardinals Coach Jerry Roell. The St. Louis 6th grade Cardinals played at home on Saturday in the St. Louis tournament.  The Cardinals faced St. Michael’s of Brookville in the first game and came away with a 32-13 victory.Stingy defense was the key to the win as St. Michael’s made only three buckets with the remainder of their points from the free throw line.  Scoring was very balanced for St. Louis as ten different Cardinals managed to connect – Benjamin Harmeyer (8), Charlie Schebler (7), Alec Bunselmeier (3), Abe Hollins (2), Noah Tuveson (2), Frank Forbeck (2), Cy Muckerheide (2), Aidan Geers (2), Nate Vankirk (2) and Conner Ertel (2).St. Louis faced Milan in the tournament final and won by a score of 27-20.The Cardinals went into the locker room at halftime with a 16-4 lead.  Player rotation was a focal point during the second half as the entire roster saw action again.  Scoring for the Cardinals in the championship game were Charlie Schebler (10), Benjamin Harmeyer (8), Noah Tuveson (4), Cy Muckerheide (2), Abe Hollins (2) and Conner Ertel (1).The Cardinals will be in action at home this Thursday, December 8th against St. Michael’s.Courtesy of Cardinals Coach John Harmeyer.St Louis hosted a 4 team tournament today.  The 5th Grade boys game results are as follows.  Game 1-SLS vs St Michael’s  – SLS Won  22 to 21.   They earned with the win a place in the championship game vs. St Lawrence.Cardinals Scoring Breakdown.  Eli Weiler – 6pts, Conner Miles – 4 pts. Evan Flaspohler – 4 pts, Hank Ritter – 3 pts, Thomas Lohmueller – 3 pts, Carson Meyer – 2 pts.  zlast_img read more

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Cricket News Ishant Sharma enters prestigious list in Adelaide Test against Australia

first_imgNew Delhi: Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team dominated proceedings on day 2 of the Adelaide Test against Australia. Ishant Sharma provided further cheer to the Indian camp by removing Aaron Finch for 0 with a magnificent in-ducker in the very first over of the innings. However, there was greater joy for the Delhi pacer in the last session as he got rid of Australian cricket team captain Tim Paine for 19 in the final session. The wicket of Paine, in addition to Finch, helped Ishant reach 50 wickets in Tests against Australia. Ravichandran Ashwin was the star with three wickets as Australia were left reeling. Ashwin was given good support by Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah as the hosts found the going tough on a sluggish wicket.Ishant is the ninth Indian bowler to take 50 wickets in Tests against Australia. However, he is also the second slowest to reach that milestone, taking 23 wickets to reach the landmark but much quicker than South Africa all-rounder Jacques Kallis, who took 28 Tests. Before Ishant, the other Indian bowlers who have taken 50 wickets in Tests against Australia are Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Kapil Dev, Ravichandran Ashwin, Zaheer Khan, Erapalli Prasanna, Bishan Singh Bedi and Shivlal Yadav.Read More | Kohli can’t score a run against this Australian pacer – Find out whoKumble is the only Indian bowler to take over 100 wickets, with the former legspinner taking 111 wickets in 20 Tests. Among pacers, Kapil Dev is the clear leader with 79 wickets while Zaheer managed to take 61 wickets but played only six Tests in nine years Down Under.Read More | Nathan Lyon concedes unwanted world record, enters this double centuryIshant’s success Down UnderThe tall right-arm pacer has a poor record in Australia, averaging over 57 and possessing a strike-rate close to 100 in 11 Tests. His best haul was 3/38 in the Brisbane Test in 2014 but Ishant has had one of his finest moments in Tests in Australia. It happened in the 2008 series and it was in Perth.India set Australia a target of 413 and in the second innings, a spell from Ishant propelled him into the limelight. After bowling seven consecutive overs, Ishant looked tired but on Virender Sehwag’s insistence, Anil Kumble asked, “Ek aur over karega (Will you bowl one more over)?” Ishant replied, “Haan, karunga (Yeah, I will)”. On the next ball, he got Ponting out again and India went on to win the match by 72 runs. Ishant’s spell to Ponting was a memorable occasion for all fans present at the WACA. For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

Read More Cricket News Ishant Sharma enters prestigious list in Adelaide Test against Australia

Persaud retains Guyana Open golf title

first_img– Sukhram reclaims female division DEFENDING men’s champion Guyanese Avinash Persaud was in excellent form in retaining his title while Christine Sukhram secured the lion share of prizes in the ladies category at the rain-affected two-day Guyana Open Golf championships played at the Lusignan Golf Course over the week-end.Persaud shot a gross 149 over the two days, beating his closest rival, Avinda Kishore, by two strokes.Persaud, who first won the title in 2006 when he was only 16 years old, shot a gross 78 on the second day, following his 71 on day one.Kishore, who is the brother of Persaud, placed second with a gross 151 from scores of 74 and 76 over the two days, while third place was taken by Mohanlall Dinanauth.In the ladies category, Sukhram reclaimed the title with the best overall gross of 171. Last year’s winner Joaan Deo secured the best net (144).Sukhram edged out Deo, who finished with a gross 180 while last year’s second place winner, Shaunella Webster, finished with a gross 185.Meanwhile, Sukhram related that her hard work leading up to the tournament has paid off.“It feels great again to win, it was challenging out there today (yesterday), but I still managed to come out successful despite my obstacles,” the champion woman revealed.Persaud in his interview said while the tournament was a challenge, he anticipated the end result. “Yea, definitely it was a challenge, but after day one I was leading, so I know today (yesterday) it will be very hard for the rest of my competitors to beat me,” the 28-year-old said.last_img read more

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QPR say coin thrower will be banned for life

first_imgQPR say anyone found to have thrown an object during the game against Arsenal will be banned from Loftus Road for life.An apparent coin-throwing incident occurred during the final minutes of Saturday’s match and was included in referee Mike Dean’s report.In a statement, QPR said they are now in the process of reviewing CCTV footage in an effort to identify those responsible.AdChoices广告Club chief executive Philip Beard added: “Such behaviour is simply not acceptable at Loftus Road, or anywhere else for that matter.“As a club, we will do everything possible to prevent such incidents happening again.“The club appeals to any fans who saw the coin throwing incident to come forward and assist our enquiries.”Rangers have also appealed for supporters who have any information to text 07557435421 in confidence.See also:Rangers could face FA chargeThe QPR v Arsenal quizJoy for QPR as Samba’s goal beats ArsenalHughes hails players after stunning winQPR skipper praised after impressive returnFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

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