Sunday, June 07, 2009

Swine flu – Scottish Tourism the next victim?

The Sunday Times has an article about the spread of swine flu in Scotland and implicit in this article is suggestion that Scots may be at more risk than others. A controversial theory to say the least:

‘Professor Hugh Pennington, emeritus professor of bacteriology at Aberdeen University, has suggested Scotland’s poor health record may help to explain why its population appears more prone to the virus than elsewhere.’

In this media age it is all about perception and if the idea that it is easier to catch swine flu in Scotland gathers momentum then the dangers to tourism are obvious. Mark Macaskall goes on to say in his article.

‘Ministers may yet decide that a ban on major events such as the T in the Park music festival and the Edinburgh Tattoo, which is attended by more than 200,000 people from around the world , is necessary.’

Is that an alarmist statement or simply a reflection of the fact that it would be a dereliction of duty if ministers had not planned for the possibility of such action? Many experts seem to think swine flu will take hold with the onset of winter anyway as is usual with cold and flu viruses so we may indeed see the cancellation of major sporting events, closure of cinemas, theatres etc but could it happen sooner than that?

Whatever happens, it is instructive to look at how a community already affected by the virus is coping. Forargyll.com has been posting updates on the situation in Dunoon and in doing so offering a platform to those threatened by the virus to exchange information. Another example of how the new media offers alternative sources of information when they are needed.
The Sunday Times article is available on line here.

1 comment:

iRight said...

I slight swerve on the marketing front should make it OK though

'Flucoming'

Yes, welcome home to Scotland - achoo!