I’m sure most of you have been buried by the flood of (mis)information on all the media outlets. If you’ve been looking for a plow to cut through the bull, then please head over to this post by Shannon which clarifies the entire situation and breaks down the whole smelly pile for you point-by-point.
Honestly, from all the panic in the media, I could have sworn they were talking about some airborne variant of HIV for crying out loud.
And I do have a few explanations as to why it was so deadly in Mexico.
1. Either the virus actually originated in the U.S. and then spread to Mexico. So we have been exposed to an earlier, perhaps less virulent, mutation of this strain. Similar to how Cowpox, a related but less serious disease to Smallpox made those infected with the earlier strain to become immune or resistant to the later one. (Probably shouldn’t have used Smallpox as an example here, but I couldn’t think of a better relationship.)
2. Official response in Mexico has been dismal to non-existent for the first few days (the most critical part) of this outbreak. I recall many “pundits” expounding on the issue and called their response from “quite competent” to “ridiculous”. Thereby ruling these “pundits” as unreliable.
3.The healthcare system in Mexico isn’t as robust as we’ve been lead to believe. Shocking!
This line from the WHO | Influenza page really illustrates the stupidity…
Worldwide, these annual epidemics result in about three to five million cases of severe illness, and about 250 000 to 500 000 deaths.
And why is it that young adults tend to be the most affected by this and the 1918 epidemic? Simple :
Young people tend to be more exposed. They are the most likely to socialize and gather in large crowds outdoors.
I.E. Parties, Social events etc… Where the spread of any contagion is facilitated.
And the deathtoll in 1918 was large for the same reason why millions of people die of disease even today. Lack of adequate healthcare. We can blame the times for the previous deaths. What’s our excuse now?