Monday, July 27, 2009

Swine Flu: South Africans are Experts at Denial

SHOOT: There is AIDS denial, crime denial, poverty denial, Apartheid denial, 2010 transport denial and denial in the highest political circles. So why would we not deny that swine flu is a problem and is going to be a serious problem? It is incredible that the Gauteng Department of Education has the foresight to declare no schools will be closed because of swine flu. I have taught in Korea and there, once a disease hits the schools, it's a wildfire. This is because the sheer volume of learners is immense, and virusses in Asia are especially nasty. So they know what to expect from H1N1. They had a practise run with SARS and H5N1. We still have much to learn.

IOL: "In Asia they are taking the virus exceptionally seriously, yet in the UK and the Netherlands you don't hear anything at all. In the East they are fanatical about it. They scan you with a machine to take your temperature when you arrive at the airport. If you have a fever they quarantine you. I sat with an Australian student who had been quarantined for five days."
clipped from

Despite assurances from the Gauteng Department of Education that no school will be closed because of swine flu, the number of cases in Joburg's schools is rising.

Last week, a private school, Redhill High, closed one week before its scheduled school holidays because the school had nine reported cases of the H1N1 virus.

The school sent out notices to parents on July 15 after it had one confirmed case of swine flu. At that stage they advised parents to look out for any flu-like symptoms.
Another private school, St Stithians College, had one pupil in its preparatory school with the virus.

Another two schools in Joburg reported 30 cases of swine flu. The pupils, from King David Victory Park and King David Linksfield, contracted the flu on a recent tour of Israel.

The Gauteng Department of Education said there had been no reported cases of swine flu at any public school.
At Parktown Girls, principal Anthea Cereseto held an assembly to inform her pupils about swine flu
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