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America, Wake Up & Mask Up!!!!!!!

By Raymond Jackson
[Editor”'s Alley Opps ”¦Note of Apology & Explanation this article was inadvertently omitted and another article wrongly printed last month]

Cough, sneeze, wheeze, drizzle, and not even an excuse me, or any attempt to cover up the expulsion. How many times has this happened to you, already, and so early in this cold and flu season? We have huge pharmaceutical companies claiming that they can”'t get going fast enough, to keep up with the demand for H1N1 flu vaccine. OK, maybe it”'s more difficult than anticipated, battling this H what N who (H1N1) bacteria, but this just does not seem fathomable, for a nation that puts men on the moon. Vaccines for Cholera, Chicken Pox, Polio and many other ailments did not seem to be as baffling as this H1N1. In any event, America, Wake Up & Mask Up! That appears the most logical and economical solution to this pandemic, which at press time had claimed the lives of over 4,000 adults and 540 children, (under the age of 18), here in America, with the state of Minnesota having 9 youth deaths. The past 17 deaths in Minnesota were all adults with preexisting conditions, which has lead some to believe this virus is a trial run of eliminating the feeble, valueless etc.  What is H1N1? We are now finding out that it is Swine Flu, which we became aware of in the spring of 2009. Some say it has been in existence for more than ten years. There are still just so many unanswered questions surrounding this virus. The name, we are told, was changed to save the pork industry from losing any money in sales. They now continuously say that you cannot get H1N1 from eating any properly cooked pork items. To me this insinuates that you can perhaps get H1N1 from eating undercooked or raw pork items. However, you probably stand more of a chance of getting trichinosis, (worms), than H1N1, from eating undercooked pork products. The following is a verbatim write up in Wikipedia pertaining to H1N1.

”˜The 2009 flu pandemic is a global outbreak of a new strain of influenza officially referred to as novel H1N1, first identified in April 2009 and commonly called swine flu. The virus is a mixing, (reassortment), of four known strains of influenza. A virus, one epidemic in humans, one epidemic in birds, and two epidemics in pigs (swine). Transmission of the new strain is human-to-human, and eating cooked pork products will not transmit the virus.”'

Wikipedia, which some think not to be very useful, for a variety of reasons, goes on to scribe: ”˜Like other influenza viruses, novel H1N1 influenza is spread by coughing, sneezing or touching contaminated surfaces and then touching the nose or mouth? Symptoms, which last up to a week, are similar to those of seasonal flu, and can include fever, sneezing, sore throat, cough, headache and muscle or joint pain. To avoid spreading the infection, the CDC, ( Center for Disease Control ), recommended that those with symptoms stay home from school and work, and avoid crowded settings in general, wearing facial masks was not recommended, except in healthcare settings.”'

Let me please repeat that last sentence to try to make sense of it; ”˜Wearing facial masks was not recommended, except in healthcare settings.”' What a ridiculous statement from the CDC. Since other media outlets are not greatly recommending wearing a mask, one must take Wikipedia to be accurate in their reporting on this issue. Healthcare settings, then, must include hospitals, nursing homes and other special care centers. Could such a statement, of them being the only places wearing a mask is suggested, be a mistake or callous intent? Many medical people are now recommending that when flying in an airplane you should wear a mask. Is an airplane much different than the city bus or train? It is very apparent that this virus is most spread in congested areas full of people. When the SARS outbreak occurred several years ago in China, the most populated country in the world, there was little talk of vaccines and much talk of masks. Our American Olympic team all wore masks during that time period in China. What is really going on? We have a sometimes available and sometimes not, H1N1 vaccine that the producers tell us will not keep us from getting sick; we just won”'t get as sick as our neighbor who did not get the vaccine. By the way, the vaccine contains some live virus that will indeed possibly make you sick! This makes little sense, except that the bottom line may center on profit margins. That may be the underlying cause of the double and triple talk.

AMERICA, WAKE UP & MASK UP!
Do get the vaccines when they become available, if that”'s your choice, because the mask also, does not guarantee a total safeguard against getting sick. Helpful suggestions include eating healthy, getting rest, exercise and hydration, (drinking plenty of fluids), as well as, dressing properly and, wearing a mask also warms the air that one breaths into their body, which makes a big difference upon entering your lungs. This all works handily with the mask and/or vaccine.
AMERICA, WAKE UP & PROTECT YOURSELF & YOUR CHILDREN.
Yes they are the future!!

Reader Feedback

One Response to “America, Wake Up & Mask Up!!!!!!!”

  1. Mike Vanoss RN, staff nurse, Hennepin County Medical Center says:

    I read your article “H1N1; America, Wake Up and Mask Up!” in “The Alley” dated January 2010. I must say I was intrigued by your contention that wide spread use of mask would contain the flu. It is true that wearing a mask in a contained environment (Droplet Precautions) is considered best practice. Droplet Precautions however, are of limited protection too much farther than arms length. Perhaps your article should have focused on hand washing as a first intervention in the containment of flu virus. You should be aware that hand washing is identified by the CDC [Center for Disease Control, a federal agency] as by far the best way to contain the spread of the flu. Your article failed to make any mention of hand
    washing. The recommendations are for 15 seconds of scrubbing with good lather then rinse. Perhaps this topic could be the subject of and article in an upcoming issue.
    Mike Vanoss RN, staff nurse, Hennepin County Medical Center.

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