According to a transcript from PM, a program broadcast around Australia on Radio National and ABC Local Radio, some believe that the flu pandemic may have passed, but the funds spent to fight it may help safeguard the public against future health crises. Many do not agree that the danger has passed; it may be too soon to tell. Read Annie Guest’s interview of John Horvath, Australia’s Chief Medical Officer.
“ANNIE GUEST: The H5N1 virus, or bird flu, has killed about 150 people across Asia, Egypt, the Middle East and Europe. But Australia’s Chief Medical Officer, Professor John Horvath says the threat of a pandemic may have passed.
JOHN HORVATH: Well it’s possible that the current H5N1 has passed, we don’t know. There’s a lot of speculation that with this much virus around, if this is the bug that was going to be the pandemic it would’ve been. Other people are of the view that because there is so much of it around it just hasn’t had the right opportunity to change.
ANNIE GUEST: With the threat of a pandemic possibly having passed, how can you be sure there was ever a real threat?
JOHN HORVATH: Well all the makings of a pandemic were there. The fact that the virus didn’t transform into a highly efficient, transmissible killer is very fortunate, though that particular risk is not yet totally passed.”
To read the rest of this interview, click here.