“Pandemic or Panic” (2010) by Brian Molloy Analysis
In the article “Pandemic or Panic” (2010) by Brian Molloy and the article “Hindsight is easy” (2010) by Erica Grove, they both discuss the way WHO response to the outbreak of H1N1 influenza and they present different perspectives on how the money was spent on and how the resource was distributed. Molloy is neutral about the WHO’s response of H1N1 influenza outbreak, while Molloy is highly skeptical. First, Molloy argues that WHO send everyone into a panic about H1N1, but it is not the threat people imaged it to be.
Grove, however, states that it is necessary for the WHO and the government to take the threat of H1N1 seriously. Next, Molloy claims that British government spend a lot of money on vaccine which makes two major pharmaceutical companies earn billions from swine flu, and there is a conflict of interest between the government and drug manufactures. He believes that this money should be spent on a right situation like helping disable instead of treating flu. Grove also believes that there is a mismanagement of the distribution of vaccine. Discussion: Molloy claims that the WHO and the government spends massive expenditure on doses of vaccine, while the death rate for H1N1 is far low than for ordinary influenza.
He criticizes the reports of H1N1 cases are exaggerated which send people into a panic about H1N1. By contrast, Grove states that the WHO did not overreact to the crisis. Rather, she feels grateful that the authorities took the threat of a pandemic seriously. She also points out that everything is always better to overprepare than to underprepare. Molloy appears to have overlooked that the powerful of virus can be. In fact, there are a couple of factors like infectivity, severity and lethality which can all affect the strength of a virus.
Transmission is also a key factor to determine how the virus spread and be identified. As Molloy mentions that the death rate for H1N1 is relatively low than for ordinary pandemic, it does not mean that H1N1 is a weak influenza. Perhaps the low death rate is due to early trace the source, infected people are well isolated from the rest of the community in order to control the spread of H1N1, or synthesis of a new vaccine by scientists in a short period of time. These could be one of the reasons of why the death rate for H1N1 is low. In this sense, Molloy fail to notice that.