USDA Pleads With Media to Use H1N1 Name for Pandemic Influenza

Preparations are being made in case H1N1 virus hits hog farms

In two separate conference calls Saturday, Ag Secretary Tom Vilsak and other experts at USDA pleaded with media representatives to adopt the H1N1 name for all references to the pandemic influenza now moving through the U.S. population.

Citing damage already done to the pork industry, the officials are urging the reference to the human virus not include the "swine" label.

From the call that I was on, it appeared that most reporters are willing to comply, but I somewhat cyncially note that all of them were PRINT media journalists.

As someone who cringes every time I hear "mad cow" for BSE, I can only hope the "swine flu" bell can actually be un-rung.


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