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Modeling shows containment could delay, not prevent, pandemic flu

QUESTION:
Can efforts to contain dangerous flu outbreaks at their source prevent further spread of the disease?

FINDINGS:
New research from scientists at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and the University of Washington in Seattle suggests that containment can buy time to prepare, but containment alone is not enough to stop a flu pandemic from occurring.

Through mathematical modeling, the researchers show that flu outbreaks are likely to emerge in multiple locations and that containment of all outbreaks is improbable. Based on the results, the scientists predict that containment efforts could likely double the time before a pandemic appears. The researchers conclude that containment should be just one element of a multi-pronged preparedness strategy.


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Contact: Emily Carlson
carlsone@nigms.nih.gov
301-496-7301
NIH/National Institute of General Medical Sciences
20-Feb-2006


Page: 1

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