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Discussion in 'First Aid Station' started by Eeyore, Apr 26, 2009.
Is anyone buying/using/EDC'ing N95 mask because of the swine flu? What brand?
Good question. I'd like to hear from an expert. Soon!
Not an expert, but I bought a case of 10 from redflarekits a while ago (collapsible, with exhaltion valve), and recently broke out one to carry with me. I live in NYC, so the recent news has not been too encouraging.
CDC does provide some guidance. Here is the list of the CDC approved N95 manufacturers.
They also have some info on proper use and general precautions.
Thanks for that info. Everyone should read this!
There are other threads on the swine flu here.
CDC says that for other than health care workers basically that using a mask won't necessarily keep you from getting the flu but once you have it, using one might keep it from spreading.
Unless you're an EMS or health care worker type I would say to skip the mask and to just do the usual stuff -- wash your hands often, cover your coughs and sneezes but not with your hand (use a tissue or your sleeve), and if you get sick just go to the doctor and STAY HOME from work, etc.. If you don't want the flu, why would you be dumb enough to come into work and spread it around to others?
As I posted elsewhere, a local radio show this morning had a virologist (an MD who was also an expert on bird flu and SARS) who confirmed that and stated that this is not anywhere near as virulent (deadly) as the media is letting you believe. While it is contagious, he stated that it is not what he called secondary or tertiary (folks, it ain't like Ebola) and he described it this way -- while there are quite a few cases in one school in Queens there are not quite a few cases in Queens or in the rest of NYC either. The numbers just are not there either for people dying or just getting sick. With summer coming on and people not being in close quarters as much as in winter he said that this should pass pretty quickly. He said there are simple things to do to help prevent catching it and what to do if you do get it.
He also said that no one was accusing the media of understating a problem lately.
Just use common sense and do the stuff you should do every day anyway to avoid getting colds and other viruses. Medical care and home care is much better than it was 100 years ago and most of us do not live in rural Mexico. It serious in that there can be a lot of flu cases and lost work time but I am not ready to get worried about anything more than that.
Compiled from what I have read thus far on a variety of sites:
1: Steer clear whenever possible of people who exhibit symptoms of this kind of flu. Avoid high population centers if possible.
2: Sneeze into your elbow and WASH YOUR HANDS... Keeping your hands clean is key. Avoiding the exhalations of other people is also key.
3: Go outside / exercise / be healthy. Flu often spreads in the Winter because people are in close proximity to one another.
Pretty much, hygiene, proximity and health are important. Hasn't stopped me from buying N95 masks though.
Swine Flu has killed a confirmed 20 people world wide. Its a storm in a tea cup, dont bother with the hype, this will be less deadly than bird flu, you remember the one that the media said would wipe out half the planet and killed a few thousand people who worked with the infected birds.
There is a reason the media is hyping this "epidemic" like they hyped previous "epidemics" and of course there will be companies trying to cash in on this "crisis".
It's at 103 dead in Mexico alone... click
Plus, from what I have read (unconfirmed) the mortality rate of the Swine flu is 6-7%. By contrast, the mortality rate of the Spanish influenza outbreak of 1918 was like 2%
This could be something, or it could be nothing. I just think it pays to be prepared.
I'm with you Phill. Hype and more hype, with a bit of wag the dog, here in the USA.
Who knows the condition of those who died in Mexico?. Regular flu can easily kill the very old , or very young , especially in a place not know for stellar medical care
In 1918 our knowledge of medicine and disease management wasnt quite what it is now, but your point is true that it is more deadly when caught.
There are 149 attributed deaths in Mexico, but only 20 are confirmed 100% to be Swine Flu. The important figure is also that whilst there are 149 attributed deaths in Mexico, worldwide there is 149 attributed deaths. What im saying is it seems to have started in Mexico and spread quickly before it was identified, but now it is the rate of stread will be minimised massively, especially when it gets to developed nations.
Even if you assume all 149 attributed were because of Swine Flu, 149 is an absolutely tiny figure. I mean wasnt there a shooting in the US recently where the guy killed 16 people - so Swine Flu, worldwide, at 6% mortality, is less than ten times more effective that one lone nutter with a gun - and that guy had a lot less time for his "outbreak".
Bird flu killed the most people in China and this will kill the most in Mexico and then a very small number in developed countries realative to the population of them. Sure, a few will die, its a matter of statistics, but similarly its a matter of statistics that it is massively unlikely it will be anyone on this website and just because you buy these masks the best ways to stop the spread is really standard stuff like washing hands and not hanging around infected people - good advice whatever strain of flu they have.
I for one am not overly concerned but will be making some adjustments. The basic steps mentioned before such as washing your hands, cover your cough, etc... will do a lot to minimize the impact in more developed nations. That said, I do plan on buying some masks just because I am getting low from doing a lot of yard work and I got a lot more that I want to do. I do plan on making some more handwashing signs for the pizza shop I run.
CDC- Swineflu and You
CDC- Swineflu Overview
The director of our local infectious disease center said the best way to get rid of the Swine Flu is for a better news story to come out. She said it was not that big a deal. Just MEDIA HYPE
Response from 3M - US
The regular flu kills a lot more people than the swine flu has so far. The only real issue is that they don't yet know how this new strain will behave, and are going on the side of caution and making a big deal of it.
I'm an EMT and our standard procedure for anyone with a wet productive cough that could be spreading flu or TB or something similar is a surgical mask for them and n95s for us. Haven't had anybody that needed this since the flu outbreak though.
As a member of the Law Enforcement and as a volunteer paramedic. As a precaution, i always carry with me a TYVEK suite and a mask in my car.
Please also refer to this site: http://doihaveswineflu.org
Aside from the morons who are panic ridden or those idiots who've had "swine flu parties" who the heck wants to be laid up for a week? Who would be a big enough jerk to spread it around school or work? I still see morons wiping their nose on their hands and then touching stuff or shaking hands. Ain't what I thought they meant by "going green." :green:
If you have a chronic disease, you may want to explore some precautionary steps. If you don't, you really have nothing to worry about. You're more likely to get killed about 1,000 different ways than from the swine flu.