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WHO Pandemic Alert Levels

Will the Swine Flu of 2009 become a pandemic, and if so when?

Review the WHO Pandemic Alert Levels below, consider the cases in Mexico, the U.S., and Canada alone, not withstanding the rapid and uncontrolled spread to other countries throughout the world, and come to your own conclusion.

In Phase 1 no viruses among animals reported to have caused infections in humans.

In Phase 2 animal flu virus is known to have caused infection in humans and is potential pandemic threat.

Cholera Infection Continues to Slow in Southern Africa, UN Says

April 22, 2009

The cholera epidemic in southern Africa continues to abate, but international and local health authorities stress the need to remain vigilant, the United Nations reported.

"Overall, the duration and magnitude of the epidemic underscores the need for strengthening surveillance, preparedness and underscores plans in all countries," according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).


[from White House briefing 4 26 09]

It’s important that people understand that there’s a role for everyone to play when there’s an outbreak going on. There are things that individuals do, there are things that families do, communities do and the government and international agencies do to reduce the impact.
At the individual level, it is important that each of us understand how we can prevent respiratory infections. Very frequent hand-washing is something that we talk about time and time again because it is an effective way to reduce transmission of disease.

The Swine Web: CDC, Mash-ups, tweets, & more

Google Flu Trends, has been updating itself with data and news stories about the swine flu pandemic. One might question the veracity of the tracking given the potential interest in pandemic possibilities. In describing how Flu Trends tracks outbreaks: "We've found that there is a close relationship between how many people search for flu-related topics and how many people actually have flu symptoms," reads an explanation on the site.

Resilience in the Face of Crisis: Why the Future Will Be Flexible

What will a post-crash, truly 21st-century world look like? For people 
thinking about global systems (economic, environmental, and social) 
one idea stands out: resilience.

Source: FastCompany.Com
Author(s): Jamais Cascio
Article location:
Date: April 3, 2009
Type: Online Blog Article

Resilience: Adaptation and Transformation in Turbulent Times

Internationally syndicated radio show “A World of Possibilities” interviewed scientists and researchers from around the world at the Resilience 2008 conference in Stockholm, Sweden. This 55minute long radio show:

Resilience Theory and YouTube

The Best Explanation To Resilience on YouTube is excellent, brief, and easy to understand. In this "Stockholm Whiteboard Seminar" from Albaeco and Stockholm Resilience Centre, Professor Brian Walker (Australia) opens with the fundamental question of resilience: "How much can you change a self organizing system before it is no longer resilient?" using examples from emergency rooms, and a forest.

Boosting Disaster Preparation through Participation - Kyrgyzstan

This community capacity building and small-scale structural mitigation project involved both communities and local government authorities in project implementation, for the sake of sustainability. In each village, "rural disaster teams" and "school disaster teams" took part in theoretical and practical training on disaster management, preparedness, and risk reduction. After an early warning system was developed, team members led a participatory process which involved preparation of village maps and risk areas, and creation of preparedness and contingency plans.

Documentaries on Health and Development

Rockhopper is one of the world's leading TV documentary makers specialising in development, health and the environment.

On this web site you can watch what you want, when you want - and free of charge.

Choose from 200 of our films, many award-winning, and all made for global broadcasters like BBC World News.

VOA article on Education as Social Vaccine

Education Slows Spread of HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa
By Joe DeCapua
Washington D.C
25 March 2009

A new study says a good education can help slow the spread of HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. The study says it acts as a social vaccine against the disease.

Penn State University Professor David Baker is sharply critical of many HIV/AIDS awareness programs. He describes them as "scandalous," saying they're "so simplistic and minimalist."

Where Foreign Aid Works

The Washington Post

Where Foreign Aid Works
Sunday, March 29, 2009; A14

The March 22 editorial "Plowshares for Peace" said that foreign aid "often doesn't do much good."

This broad statement overlooked the immense benefit of many foreign aid programs, particularly public health efforts that save lives, stave off epidemics and stabilize economies.

Fighting Global Warming Offers Growth And Development Opportunities, Leading Economist Proposes

ScienceDaily (Mar. 12, 2009) — Combating climate change may not be a question of who will carry the burden but could instead be a rush for the benefits, according to new economic modeling presented at "Climate Change: Global Risks, Challenges & Decisions" hosted by the University of Copenhagen on March 12.

View full posting at

Water & Energy Resources and National Security

CSIS and Congressman Linder's House Water Caucus held a briefing on WATER 3 31 09

Howard D. Passell, PhD
Water and Energy Resources Ecologist, Sandia National Laboratories (national security labs focusing on macro level)

Functioning ecosystems are basis of all human security and prosperity – we cannot ignore complexities and interdependencies any more.

Vaccine Refusals Spur Outbreak Fears

Vaccine Refusals Spur Outbreak Fears

March 25, 2009
By Maria Danilova

A widespread scare about vaccine side effects in Ukraine has led to a sharp drop in immunizations that could result in disease outbreaks spreading beyond the former Soviet republic, international and local health officials say.

Climate May Heat Crises, Military Analysts Say

Source: Christian Science Monitor
Author(s): Kelly Hearn
Original Post: Climate May Heat Crises, Too, Military Analysts Say
Type: News Article

March 17, 2009 - Top US defense officials are envisioning ways that American military personnel, equipment, and installations might be affected by extreme weather events, rising ocean temperatures, shifts in rainfall patterns, and other natural resource stresses projected to accompany global climate change – stresses that may exacerbate existing security threats and breed new ones.


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