The H1N1 flu virus is a work in progress. While the infection rate seems to be subsiding, for now, in Mexico, many other countries are preparing for potential outbreaks, either now or later in the year when the typical flu season begins again in the northern hemisphere. The World Health Organization is preparing as well and is starting to ship 2.4 million treatments of anti-flu drugs to 72 countries it says are most in need of them.
Laurie Garrett, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, discusses how quickly the H1N1 virus is spreading, how world governments have responded to the crisis and the potential for a vaccine.
Eric Klinenberg, a professor at New York University and author of “Fighting for air: The battle to control America’s media,” discusses how U.S. and foreign media have fared in terms of covering the H1N1 outbreak.
Asia has suffered through a series of health crises in recent years — most recently the SARS outbreak in 2002 and 2003. Simon Tay, the chairman of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs and member of the Asia Society, discusses how the crisis is playing out in Hong Kong, Singapore, Vietnam and China and looks at which countries are best prepared to deal with the H1N1 outbreak.
Of course, no country has been affected by the H1NI outbreak so deeply as Mexico. Mexico has also suffered a great deal of economic damage, and it has concerns about how other countries are reacting to the epidemic. Christopher Sabatini, the senior policy director of the Council of the Americas, discusses economic damage from the flu, complaints that Mexicans are being discriminated against and how Mexico’s southern neighbors view its handling of the crisis.