Swine Flu Spread Following Airline Routes

06.30.09 | FL News Team

Researchers have discovered any new disease really is just an airline flight from anywhere.  Researchers at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, Canada collected International Air Transport Association data and worldwide reports of swine flu infections.  They discovered the H1N1 followed airline route maps exactly as it spread around the planet.  The spread of the virus was first and quickest in March and April in the U.S. and Canada.  The two nations were where 80-percent of all airline passengers traveled in the same months last year.  The researchers are assuming 2009 travel patterns were similar to those in 2008 when more than two-point-three million passengers flew from Mexico to more than a thousand cities in 164 countries.  The majority of travelers landed in Los Angeles followed by New York.  The first swine flu cases were detected in California in April.  Experts say the data will allow cities and nations around the world to respond to news of a health threat earlier and more intelligently than ever before.