I don't know about you, but I've been hearing about bird flu for the last couple of years. So now there are concerns being raised about whether or not it's communicable to humans.  

According to reuters.com,
Scientists tracking the spread of bird flu are increasingly concerned that gaps in surveillance may keep them several steps behind a new pandemic, according to Reuters interviews with more than a dozen leading disease experts.” 

Coronavirus Virus Outbreak

Scientists have been following a subtype of the bird flu designated H5N1 that has 129 documented cases in dairy herds in the United States. Scientists say this indicates that it could be transmitted to humans in the future. Cases have been starting to show up in other mammals as well. 

The consensus seems to be that it is a pandemic that's coming our way, but it's in no great hurry to get here.  

According to reuters.com,
Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said surveillance for humans is "very, very limited." 

cow face with tongue in nose close-up on meadow

Is it time to freak out? 

Be concerned, yes. Freak out, no. As of today (7/3/24), there have been only three reported human infections of the H5N1 virus after contact with cows and they have said their experience was mild. United States and Europe are working on what they're calling pre pandemic flu vaccines for use by high-risk individuals. Finland will probably be the first country to inoculate fur and poultry farm workers. 

I’m not ready to go to my drug store and demand an inoculation for bird flu. 

But I am going to keep an eye on what's going on and be ready to react. 

Scientists wary of bird flu pandemic 'unfolding in slow motion' | Reuters
Terrified of the bird flu? What you need to know (kissfm1053.com)
HPAI - Pacific Northwest Ag Network (pnwag.net)

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