Friday, October 30, 2009

Quote du Jour: H1N1 Hysteria

The Tory MLA for Battle River-Wainwright, Doug Griffiths, has been fielding complaints from his constituents after a clinic in Wainwright ran out of vaccine earlier this week.

Griffiths believes both politicians and the public need to settle down.

"This sort of pandemic hysteria is, is — I don't understand why people are doing it. It's the flu," he said.
Gee. Maybe the word "pandemic" and the message from various levels of government that people should be vaccinated has something to do with that - no?

Day 5 of the vaccination program here in Alberta and the handling of the situation is still an absolute mess.

People wanting the swine flu vaccine in Calgary are being turned away as the clinics in Alberta's two biggest cities prepare for an early Friday closure.

Clinics in Calgary and Edmonton have been open every day this week until 8 p.m. But for the next three days, the clinics are set to close at 3:30 p.m. in Calgary and 4 p.m. in Edmonton.

All five of Calgary's H1N1 vaccinations have closed their lines to new people as of noon, Alberta Health Services announced. Those already waiting in line will get the shot.

On Friday morning, new flu assessment clinics opened in Calgary and Edmonton with the aim of easing congestion in hospital emergency rooms.

Before the clinic opened Friday at 8 a.m. in Calgary, about a dozen people shivered in line, eyeing the empty chairs inside the closed building.

"Adding to that frustration is that more than 200 people waiting for the H1N1 vaccine in the very same building are being allowed to wait inside," said CBC News reporter Erin Collins.
What's wrong with this picture?

On top of all of that, Alberta Health minister Liepert is now saying that vaccination clinics may close next week because they're running out of the vaccine.

When I saw my doctor the other day, who was at least able to give me my regular flu shot, he said his office was just placing an order for the vaccine and he held out very little hope that it would actually be delivered. He was not impressed with the government's handling of the situation.

I'm still "high-risk" since I have lupus. Exactly where am I supposed to get the vaccine? And when?

Adding insult to injury - after instituting a hiring freeze for nurses not too long ago - the Stelmach government (tone deaf to the core) picked this frenzied time to ask health care workers to take a 2 year wage freeze. Every Conservative government Alberta has had for the past 40 years has inevitably screwed up the province's finances while pandering to Big Oil and the first place they hit for cuts is always health care. Why the boneheaded majority of voters keep electing these fiscally-challenged clowns is beyond me. Then again everybody knows how scary those "socialists" in the opposition are, right? Dog forbid Albertans should actually try a new ideological regime that might actually improve their lives. No. Conservatism is God - no matter how many times it's been proven otherwise. See: Market, Free - Crash.

Meanwhile, at the federal level, the Minister of Damage Control, John Baird, told concerned opposition members during Friday's QP that his party isn't making this a political issue. That, after weeks - months - of pointing the finger at the Liberal party as if it's the actual party in power in charge of dealing with pandemic preparedness. When all else fails - and it has - send out Mr Pit Bull to provide cover for the Cons.


Temperatures rise as 'flu rage' explodes across Canada

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