Wednesday, August 12, 2009

H1N1 Flu Article from Time... & Books of Note

Intriguing (and a bit pause-inducing) article titled "Inside the Fight Against a Flu Pandemic" from the Aug 17 Time Magazine.

Written by Michael Scherer, the piece looks at the flu formerly known as "swine" and steps private industry and the Federal Government are taking to prepare for the fall flu season.

As the story details, many are expecting a rash of cases as school starts as well as when the more traditional flu season hits in the fall. In anticipation of this, an H1N1 vaccine is being manufactured, but that likely won't be ready until the October time frame, and require two shots spaced four weeks apart... this on top of the standard flu shot already long recommended each year.

Scherer writes of the uncertainty about H1N1 because nobody knows if the virus will remain in it's fairly non-dangerous state, become even more mild or turn into something with a larger impact. While that works itself out and vaccines are prepared, the standard anti-illness remedies of washing hands frequently and keeping surfaces clean are very much recommended.


Not from the same issue, but also from Time are a couple of different mentions of books that sound interesting:

The first is a recommendation of "The Waxman Report: How Congress Really Works" by Representative Henry Waxman (Democrat from California).

The second is Time's "Summer Reading List" featuring 15 different recommendations. Those that stood out for myself are listed below:

- Recommendation for "The Man Who Was Thursday" by G.K. Chesterton. I've heard of Chesterton's writings about religion and apparently this is a short read also available for less than $2 on the Kindle (and conversely the Kindle for iPhone app).

- Recommendation for "The Count of Monte Cristo" by Alexandre Dumas. Must be good as I keep hearing about it... plus, I already have it on my iPhone.

- Recommendation by Joe Klein for "The Increment" by David Ignatius. It's a spy novel from a prolific writer in the genre... and recommended by one of my favorite writers.