HEALTH

Dietary supplement coalition speaks out against bogus swine flu claims

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON A coalition of associations representing the dietary supplement industry on Friday urged marketers and retailers of dietary supplements to refuse to stock or sell any supplements that are presented as treating or curing swine flu.

Simply put, there is currently no scientific data supporting the use of any product to treat the H1N1 virus, save early indications from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that prescription antivirals Tamiflu and Relenza have had some success in treating the virus. And as it pertains to dietary supplements more specifically, “federal law does not allow dietary supplements to claim to treat any diseases, including swine flu,” the coalition stated.

The organizations supporting this advisory represent the majority of dietary supplement manufacturers, and include the American Herbal Products Association, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association, the Council for Responsible Nutrition, the Natural Products Association and the United Natural Products Alliance.

“Each of the associations and its member companies remain committed to providing the American public with high quality products for supporting personal health and permitting ‘self-care’ choices,” the coalition stated in a joint statement. “Each of the associations is also committed to recognizing that there are some health conditions for which the choice of self-care should be actively discouraged. The current global outbreak of swine flu is such a condition.”

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Swine flu case count climbs to 141 across 19 states

BY Michael Johnsen

ATLANTA According to the figures released Friday morning by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of domestic swine flu cases now total 141 across 19 states, up from 109 cases across 11 states reported Thursday.

The state tally now includes Arizona (4), California (13), Colorado (2), Deleware (4), Illinois (3), Indiana (3), Kansas (2), Kentucky (1), Massachusetts (2), Michigan (2), Minnesota (1), Nebraska (1), Nevada (1), New Jersey (5), New York (50), Ohio (1), South Carolina (16), Texas (28) and Virginia (2). The only death reported so far has come out of Texas.

As of early this morning, the World Health Organization reported 331 confirmed swine flu cases internationally, though those numbers do not yet reflect CDC’s latest update. Mexico has reported 156 confirmed human cases of infection, including nine deaths.

The following countries have reported laboratory confirmed cases with no deaths — Austria (1), Canada (34), Germany (3), Israel (2), Netherlands (1), New Zealand (3), Spain (13), Switzerland (1) and the United Kingdom (8).

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Sabre: Travelers may not be alarmed by swine flu outbreak

BY Michael Johnsen

SOUTHLAKE, Texas Business and leisure travelers are continuing to travel despite growing attention surrounding the H1N1 virus (swine flu), indicating that travelers are not reacting with as much alarm as media reports may indicate, Sabre Holdings stated Friday.

Travel volumes recorded at Sabre Holdings show that aside from the decline in travel to Mexico, business and leisure travel within the United States and to other parts of the world is currently holding steady, reflecting the same pragmatic perspective among travelers that President Barack Obama offered in his news conference on Wednesday.

Travel agencies show similar findings with their clients.

“The vast majority of our clients remain on the road,” stated Jane Batio, president of CorpTrav, a Chicago-based travel management company with more than $180 million in annual air bookings. “We’ve only cancelled six trips across our entire client base in the past week, and future bookings remain in sync with rebounding trends we’ve seen across the past two months.”

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