Swine Flu (H1N1/09)

Is the Swine Flu still a pandemic?

Answer

Wiki User
07/27/2011

UPDATE: No, as of August 10, 2010, the pandemic was declared by the World Health Organization (WHO) to be in the Post Pandemic Phase.

Yes, the spread that began in late March 2009, continues with widespread outbreaks in multiple areas of the world and this means that the pandemic phase is still in effect.

The World Health Organization (WHO) continues to monitor the pandemic and has been since before they declared this to have met the criteria to be called a pandemic in June 2009. To be considered a pandemic, there needs to be rapid spread of a communicable disease, such as the flu, across large areas of the world such as across continents, or, as is the case of the 2009 A-H1N1/09 pandemic, a spread world-wide.

The WHO has not yet seen the indicators to show that we are approaching the post pandemic phase, so it is still officially considered a pandemic as of mid December 2009. There are predictions among scientists that we may even see a third wave of the spread starting again around the first of the year of 2010.

Luckily, this particular virus has not been as virulent as was feared, so the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are still calling it a Category 1 pandemic in their system to categorize pandemics according to their severity of morbidity and mortality.

The CDC system assigns the category level (Category 1 through 5) based on the Case Fatality Ratio (CFR), the percentage of fatalities compared to the number of cases. The system is defined by the CDC as follows:

"Category........CFR....................Example(s)

1.................less than 0.1%.......Current Swine Flu Pandemic (similar CFR to seasonal flu)

2.................0.1% to 0.5%.........Asian Flu and Hong Kong Flu

3.................0.5% to 1%............N./A

4.................1% to 2%...............N/A

5.................2% or higher..........Spanish flu"