Essay about H1N1 Pandemic

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1. During the H1N1 flu pandemic, risk communicators expected the public to experience certain outrage factors. These risk factors include but are not limited to the following. Controllability, the flu virus seemed to spread rapidly among the public. Controlling the virus appeared to be a problem during the early stages of the pandemic, this made people feel anxious and unsure. Catastrophic potential was another factor that played a major role. The H1N1 virus had the potential to cause a significant number of deaths and injuries grouped in time and space. That by itself created panic and Uncertainty among the public. During the first stages of the outbreak, the public was not fully aware of its extent. As the death toll increased more and …show more content…
Most assumed that it was just another flu vaccination that might not be effective toward this new identified strain. Another outrage surrounded the availability of the flu vaccine. Big companies such as Wall Street firms Goldman Sachs and Citibank have been criticized for the entirely benign behavior of ordering some vaccine and getting their orders duly filled (partly filled, actually) by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene The outrage was so enormous it prompted Director Thomas Frieden of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to send out an email reminding state and local health departments that the pandemic vaccine should be used only for people in prioritized categories (Sandman, 2). The final and most prominent outrage factor was demonstrated by the Media attention. Due to the considerable amount of media coverage the H1N1 virus received, the risk was judged to be greater than risks from incidents receiving little or no media attention. There was a wave of media hysteria surrounding the H1N1 pandemic. This scare came at a time when most people were already frightened by the Great Recession, worried about losing their jobs, homes, and retirement savings. All these underlying factors increased the amount of outrage this issue received.

2. During the early stages of the H1N1 outbreak, the event was categorized as having a high hazard level while having a low outrage level. According to Sandman this calls for a task of
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