n South African Medical Journal - H1N1 hype a treasure trove for conspiracy theorists : from the editor

Volume 100, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



In June 2009, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the influenza H1N1 virus a pandemic, the first such pandemic to be declared in 41 years. At that time, the new strain had infected 28 000 people worldwide, with 141 fatalities. Since then the pandemic has turned out to be a bit of a damp squib for much of the global public. Americans believe that the flu threat was overblown and the pandemic is over, and therefore do not intend to get the swine flu vaccine being pushed by US public health authorities, according to a recent poll of the Harvard School of Public Health.

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