Albemarle’s Avian ABC Alert
If you turn on the television tonight and watch the world premiere of the ABC movie "Fatal Contact: Bird Flu in America," airing at 8pm EST, you'll see plenty of scenes shot in and around Virginia, as well as a character eerily referred to as the "Governor of Virginia." Just try to remember it's NOT REAL. At least not yet. In an attempt to head off a War of the Worlds-esque panic, complete with suicides and mile-long traffic jams down evacuation routes, Albemarle County has released a list of tips to help residents differentiate between bird flu fact and fiction:
There is no influenza pandemic in the world at this time.
H5N1 avian influenza is almost exclusively a disease of birds. The H5N1 virus has not yet appeared in the U.S.
Should the H5N1 virus appear in the U.S., it does not mean the start of a pandemic.
There are steps individuals, families and communities can take to prepare. You can keep a supply of food and medicines on hand in case you have to stay home, you can practice good public health measures like frequent hand washing and staying home when sick. There is good information available on www.pandemicflu.gov.
Now go make some popcorn!!