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Horrific scenarios for swine flu dissemination in Greece

21 July 2009 / 08:07:20  GRReporter
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Horrific scenarios for the dissemination of swine flu in Greece that every third Greek will get infected during fall were forecasted based on epidemiological models.

A research done by the National Public Health Department shows that 4400 infected people will have to be admitted in a hospital and about 900 000 will have to take antivirus medications. From financial point of view this will cost ?200 million to the Health System and about ?3 billion to insurance companies. Due to sick leafs the infrastructure of the country will be severely influenced – transportation, electric supply, telecommunications.

“As far as we are concerned no plans are stipulated for action in emergency situation when it comes to people missing from their jobs,” confirmed representatives of the Telecommunication Organization, the State electricity company and the Railways Transportation Organization.

“According to the epidemiological models for one month and a half to three months, the maximum number of Greeks, who can get infected is 36% out of the total population,” said for Ta Nea newspaper Angelos Hadzakis, professor in the Medical University in Athens. “For now the worst case scenario is for 20% of the population to get infected for a week. Of course, we can be part of the first and only wave, in which case we will not have a problem,” notes Mr. Hadzakis.

On the other hand Panagiotis Evstatiou from the National Health Center said that “there are no such scenarios” and that out of 110 000 infected in total all around the world, there are 550 death cases. Also he assured that people should not panic, because the flu is in its mild form.

According to the research done by Nikos Maniadakis from the National Public Health Department, if 40% of all employed are missing from their jobs for 5 to 7 days, then this will affect the Greek economy severely and the losses can account for about ?3 billion. “Part of this loss will fall onto the insurance companies,” notes Mr. Maniadakis. The total price of the vaccines, which will arrive in Greece, is ?150 million and this will be enough for the whole population. “Purchasing the vaccines and vaccinating people will financially trouble the health system but it will lower the number of infected people with 70%-80%. Though, this will lower the losses, which are expected from the production fall,” concludes Mr. Maniadakis.

“In case the worst scenario is confirmed, the whole system will be paralyzed,” says Panagiotis Brofas, member of the administration council of the Telecommunication Organization. “When it was confirmed that there are two cases of swine flu infections in the central offices of the company, we asked for two thermal cameras, which we are still expecting to be installed,” complains Mr. Brofas.

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