Friday, March 10, 2006

Do we trust our government to protect us against Avian Flu?

Billions of dollars have already been spent on fighting the Avian Flu pandemic, and the chances of it spreading are still quite high. However we will never have enough vaccines or medicines to fight off this disease if it indeed spreads. The two solutions that Caplan and McGee suggest are quarantine and rationing. For this to happen the public needs to trust their government officials with their health and life—which, right now, they do not.

The authors explain that if military men in gas masks invade people’s homes and communities the reaction will be panic and mass hysteria. In order for such a government response to run smoothly McGee and Caplan suggest educational classes and town meetings where officials explain what will need to be done if Avian Flu spreads widely to humans.

Read more: Arthur Caplan and Glenn McGee on Bioethics at

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