City: Stay Calm!

“People should not panic," the heartbroken father said. “It’s not what people think.”
So reports the Daily News, quoting Zeferino Zamora, father of a 16-month-old toddler, who died Monday night.

Jonathan Zamora Castillo, by all indications, did not die of swine flu. It took the city almost 24 hours to produce test results for the H1N1 virus – much longer than necessary -- suggesting added care was taken before publicizing the results. Following protocol, the Health Department is sending tissue samples to the CDC for confirmation.

That Daily News quote above comes about three-fourths of the way into today’s story about the boy’s negative test results. Arguably, it should have been much higher.

Little Jonathan Zamora’s death, whatever else it might mean, should be a good reminder to all news agencies – including this one – that we need to think about the impressions we’re making on a city and region that is understandably nervous about a spreading, but so far relatively mild, illness.

So who or what is stoking flu concerns? What do you think? Post your comments here.