Swine flu not to be sneezed at

In an Audioboo I recorded last night commenting about developments over the outbreak of swine flu in Mexico, I said that what’s happening – the seemingly-unstoppable spread of the virus and the increasing concern from the World Health Organization as evidenced by its elevated threat level – gives me a growing sense of unease.

It seems to me that the greatest risk of catching the virus and subsequently spreading it is poor personal hygiene habits more than anything else. That’s now the focus in the UK of a 30-second government video ad that reminds you to practice good hygiene.

It’s a good reminder anyway, swine flu fears or not, especially as it seems that wearing face masks won’t do much to protect you.

In the UK, every household will be getting a government leaflet next week. The WHO website has plenty of information about swine fever although the site is definitely creaking under the strain of visits and may be down when you visit.

I find the detailed information on the BBC website useful and helpful.

What more can any of us do? Quite a bit, actually, in helping others understand what they can do to minimize risk. In an organizational context, IABC ran a webinar yesterday on “Swine-Origin Influenza A (H1N1) Virus Outbreak: What your organization needs to know and do right now.” You can buy a recording.

Stay safe!

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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