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Avian Flu Drill

By: Angelica Alvarez
By: Angelica Alvarez

Empty sidewalks and quiet streets; when the bird flu hits the United States this is what your hometown could look like.

Thomasville resident Janay Gurley said, "One of my biggest concerns is if the bird flu does come, will there be enough vaccines for everybody, and if insurance will cover it, or how expensive will it be."

The Center for Disease Control estimates 40 percent of our country will be infected and too sick to work, shutting down a huge portion of our country's manpower. The Center for Disease Control says they're not sure when the bird flu will hit U.S. shores, but they're urging states to take action now rather than later.

Georgia is conducting a statewide drill, the largest drill of this kind ever practiced in the United States. Hospitals are pretending to be in a state of emergency with the bird flu.

Archbold Director of Emergency Mark Swicord said, "As the scenario goes now, we're starting to have civil unrest in the area, food supplies are running low, the fuel supplies are running low."

Hospitals will have to provide health care as well as find resources to run hospitals. Archbold will be communicating with other hospitals and agencies, getting needed supplies. Medical experts predict the avian virus will mutate, allowing it to be passed from human to human. Once this takes place, experts say they may have a better chance at a more effective vaccine.

The Florida Department of Health says they are providing education to EMS hospital staff and private physicians, emphasizing the need to be alert to symptoms of bird flu.


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