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United States Medicine

The Path Toward Improved Biosurveillance 25

Lasrick writes "Interesting opinion piece that explains successes and holes in the U.S. system of detecting and responding to pandemics: 'In April 2009, following an experimental protocol, staff members at a Navy lab in San Diego tested specimens from two patients using a new diagnostic device. Both tested positive for influenza, but, oddly, neither specimen matched the influenza A subtypes that are known to infect humans. This finding raised suspicions, and so the samples were sent to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Further tests would reveal that these two patients were the first reported cases of a novel H1N1 influenza virus that would cause a global pandemic in 2009. In many respects, the Navy lab's discovery of H1N1 is a success story for US efforts to boost its biosurveillance capabilities.'"
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The Path Toward Improved Biosurveillance

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  • Whoa (Score:4, Funny)

    by binarylarry ( 1338699 ) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @10:37PM (#44387819)

    At first I read it as "Brosurveillance" and wasn't sure what the fuck that means.

    But now I want to know.

    • Re:Whoa (Score:4, Funny)

      by Megahard ( 1053072 ) on Thursday July 25, 2013 @11:11PM (#44387985)

      Made me think the NSA was noting every time I took a dump.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        We will start recording your movements the moment you install an IP-enabled toilet.

        Camera footage, however, will not be stored indefinitely. We promise.

        • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

          If you install an IP-enabled toilet, you deserve to be monitored.

          Not that anyone will want to.

    • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

      brusurveillance is the hanz und gruber method from stasi, hire both brothers as snitches to snitch on each other.

  • More Whitewashing (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I Like all these "US government surveillance is GOOD for you!" articles lately.
    Means they really are running scared about all the illegal shit they do. I hope the paycheck for Lasrick ist worth it.

    And "Biosurveillance" is a cool newspeak where all the first links on google go to such paragons of virtue as the, and so on

  • Weird Article (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ColdWetDog ( 752185 ) on Friday July 26, 2013 @12:27AM (#44388313) Homepage

    I basically don't get it. The Navy has developed a new test for Influenza that (apparently) doesn't need the typical surface markers that other tests do. Cool. But TFA just drops that and wanders around the US government's attempt at creating a more unified / functional bio-surveillance program but then complains we don't have the money or expertise to do it.

    OK. Fine. Another first world Problem.

    I'd like to know more about the test. I'm well aware of the Government's inability to organize anything more complex than an egg coloring contest.

  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Friday July 26, 2013 @02:45AM (#44388771) Homepage

    Here's the technical article mentioned []. Open source, peer reviewed, incidentally. The Navy gets a mouth swab from every new recruit (all services), and shipped to a lab for analysis. This is done so they catch contagious diseases early. It also gives the military something it's hard to get today - samples from a sizable healthy population. So they have good baseline data for people who aren't sick, to compare against.

    One valuable result of that study is that detection and sequencing of a broad-range of influenza-like viruses may lead to a vaccine that blocks all of them. [] There's now more understanding of what's common to all flu-like viruses.

    • The Spanish flu of 1917 killed more people, young healthy people, than WWI did.
      That's why looking for disease is important.
      And the Spanish flu started in a barracks in Kansas.They had another outbreak of H7N2 (I think) in a barracks in America that scared the crap out of everyone because it was so infectious but later on, they realized part of the issue was the living situation itself.

      I like that 'THEY' are monitoring the health of our species.
  • and a basic income: []
    "Right now, a profit driven health care system has sized emergency rooms for average needs, and those emergency rooms are often full. With a basic income and more money going on a systematic basis to the health care system, the health care system emergency rooms will no longer be overrun with people there for reasons they could see a doctor for. So, emergency care would be better for millionaires. Millionaires wit

Fear is the greatest salesman. -- Robert Klein