H1N1 and Swine Flu Proves More Challenging to Control in Large Cities Like Mexico City and New York

ATLANTA, Nov. 11 (UPI) — H1N1 flu in Mexico City and New York may have helped health experts understand the challenges posed by disease response in large cities, researchers say.

David M. Bell and colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said by 2025, almost three-quarters of the world’s population will live in cities.

“When millions of people are crowded together in huge cities, responses to disease outbreaks that have worked in rural areas or smaller towns may not work as well,” Bell said in a statement Wednesday.

“Several questions emerged. For example, how do you get many overlapping governmental agencies to cooperate? How do you get drugs and vaccines to people who travel, live in slums with no addresses, or are homeless? How do you separate ill family members from well ones in tiny one- or two-room apartments?”

U.S. health experts will need to answer these questions as the H1N1

pandemic continues, Bells said.

The findings are scheduled to be published to appear in the December edition of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

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