Shanghaiist is sick of bird flu. But we’re dedicated to weeding out the most interesting and useful stories amid the media hysteria surrounding the whole issue. (And we also have to keep up with it for work … but that doesn’t negate our dedication to our readers.) In no particular order of importance, a quick run through of some of the information floating around this week.
Through an interesting feat of logic, China first decided that since bird flu was contained in a particularly hard-hit area in Liaoning province, obviously this meant China had contained the disease … and then a day later realized this may have been somewhat of a premature statement as the country announced two new outbreaks. For those of you keeping track, that is 17 outbreaks in just the past month … including the return of bird flu to two areas which had previously contained bird flu outbreaks earlier in the year. So far, China has seen a total of 21 outbreaks in 2005.
Beijing has threatened local officials with demotion, sacking and hefty fines if suspected outbreaks are not reported according to protocol. Shanghaiist is currently reserving judgment on the effectiveness of these measures.
Last week’s big announcement of China’s plans to vaccinate the country’s entire stock of domestic fowl was met with wide international approval. Finally, the New York Times managed to find some experts with a grasp of reality who expressed more than a little skepticism at China’s ambitious plan. Seriously. How in the hell is China going to find (and then catch) every single domestic bird in the country — a very large portion of which run around in peoples’ back yards — and then jab each one (twice!) with a needle?
The unlinkable South China Morning Post announced the return of heat temperature scanners at country borders … but also featured a story last week about how inaccurate these scanners can be. According to the SCMP, these scanners can be as much as 2 degrees Celsius off the mark due to the location on the face that is targeted for temperature readings.
There, now don’t you feel better?
Also on Shanghaiist:
This day in bird flu history I
Still ‘finger lickin’ good’?
Shanghai might start producing Tamiflu
Paranoia will destroy ya
Sole Search: Bird flu cleaning Shanghai’s shoes
OK, now we’re worried about the bird flu
Photo from tribuneindia.com.