Here is a rough personnal translation from France Romandie News.
(©AFP / 02 mai 2009 19h19)
H1N1: WHO do not know the gravity of the pandemic.
GENEVA – WHO “do not know to wich level the H1N1 virus can be grave or mild”, said a responsable of the organisation who has estimate that the evolution of the situation in the next few days in Europe will be determinative.
“The degree of gravity is not fully establish”, declared Dr Michael Ryan, director at the WHO World Wide Network Alert and responses in a pandemic(GOARN).
World Health Organisation (WHO) declared last wednesday alert Phase 5 to emphasize that a pandemic is imminent. The maximum Level 6, that has not yet been declared describe State of Pandemic but not its gravity degree underline Dr Ryan.
The Mexican Government estimate on Friday that the virus was not as aggressive than feared and that the epidemic is in a stabilisation phase with cases count unchanged at 16 deaths in the country.
From the HQ of WHO in Geneva, Dr. Ryan has called to be prudent in the evaluation of the situation.
“When remembering the case of SARS or other epidemics, you can realise how difficult it is to, at this stage of the epidemic to make an precise estimation of the gravity of the disease provoqued by A (H1N1) he emphasized.
“I do not criticise the government of Mexico who has to face a complex situation and who was exceptionnally cooperative when we asked informations, said Dr. Ryan.
The evolution of the situation in Europe in the next few days will allow to determine the extent to wich the mutated virus has propagated in a new continent, sine qua non condition to raise the WHO pandemic alert level at the maximum 6, estimate Dr. Ryan in the press conference.
“Actually, I will reiterate that a pandemic is imminent because we see the disease spreading.
But we have not yet establish a sustain transmission (outside North America). At this stage, we should expect that level 6 be reach but we Hope it will not be he added.
Une transmission “soutenue” signifie que “la maladie se répand profondément dans une population, et pas seulement au sein d’un cercle familial”, a expliqué le Dr Ryan.
Measures taken to treat H1N1 cases among travellers getting in Europe from Mexico or the U.S. seems to have been efficient stated the Director of GOARN.
“At this moment, it would not be recommended in any ways to suggest that these events are not under our control”, he said. “I think that within the next few days will tell us” where the situation will be said Dr Ryan.
“We have no proof of a propagation in a population outside North America” he said.
(©AFP / 02 mai 2009 19h19)