Global Health Database open to all — to assist H1N1 effort

From a May 1, 2009 news release from the United States Agricultural Information Network:
CABI today has announced free access to its specialist Global Health database – the definitive database for public health information –
{ Princeton does have a subscription which is listed under our "Articles & Databases" groupings.}

Simultaneously CABI has developed a Swine flu ‘dashboard’ that brings together up-to-the-minute information on the virus ( ‘dashboard’ includes resources from CABI and critical advice from key health organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Influenza researchers urgently need to be able to refer back to previous scientific work in this area to understand the behaviour of previous strains of the virus and to research effective mechanisms for handling earlier outbreaks.
In a fast changing sequence of events that has led to the rapid escalation of concern from WHO, and the reaction of national governments in considering their response to a possible influenza pandemic, release of the database is designed to give urgently needed support to those who need it most: scientists, medical professionals and health authorities investigating the causes and treatments of the disease and linkages to past outbreaks.

The Global Health database brings together global knowledge on every aspect of influenza since 1910. The knowledge it contains could provide a key weapon in health researchers’ response in understanding and controlling the virus.

Much of the data in Global Health is derived from publications that have long since vanished. They tell us a great deal about past pandemics, from rates and patterns of transmission, duration, timing of epidemiological peaks, geographical distribution of the disease, government preparedness and quarantine provisions through to effects on different age and social groups, severity in developing versus developed countries, symptoms, causes of mortality (secondary problems, especially pneumonia, were devastating in the Spanish flu) and mortality rates.

 By opening the door to a wealth of historical information on past pandemics, the Global Health database has the potential to reveal vital clues in the international fight against swine flu (influenza A – H1N1).
CABI Swine Flu Dashboard –
Global Health database –