London Book Festival Honorable Mention
The 1918 avian influenza pandemic has been called "the greatest medical holocaust in history." In a few short months, it killed 50 100 million people. It had a very high mortality rate, in excess of 2%, whereas annual flu epidemics, which kill 250 500 thousand people each year, have a mortality rate of about 0.1%. The 1918 flu pandemic killed more people in a year than the Black Death of the Middle Ages killed in a century; it killed more people in 25 weeks than HIV/AIDS killed in 25 years.
A new strain of flu, labeled "H5N1," has emerged in recent years. H5N1 is good at killing having a mortality rate in excess of 50% but it is not yet good at spreading. Given that this virus is at least 10 20 times more deadly than the 1918 strain, if it mutates to the point of becoming equally contagious, it could then rival the ferocity of some strains of Ebola, and be as contagious as the common cold. That being the case, evidence suggests that at a minimum it would kill 500 million people, or 7% of the world s population
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David Ritchey's vocations have included: naval officer, businessman, fine art photographer, psychotherapist, researcher, and writer. His avocations have included: scuba diving, sailing, skiing, tennis, golf, gardening, woodworking, dogs, magic, bridge, and SCRABBLE™.
After being educated in economics at Yale University, he served for five years as an officer in the U.S. Navy, including a year in Vietnam. Back in civilian life, he initially became a businessman, but shortly thereafter followed his true inclinations and became a fine art photographer.
While immersed in the art world, he became fascinated by the psychology/neurology of creativity, and returned to school to train as a psychotherapist. During his 15 years of clinical practice, specializing in hypnotherapy, he became especially interested in the psychodynamics of those clients who reported having had transpersonal ("metaphysical") experiences, and undertook a twelve-year project of researching and writing about such people, who he speaks of as "Anomalously Sensitive Persons."
Later, he became his daughter's business manager at her art gallery on Cape Cod, and spent a few years involved simultaneously in the worlds of both business and art.
Now "retired," he spends his time writing about a wide range of subjects that are of special interest to him. Information about his books can be found at davidritchey-author.com.
He currently lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania with his golden retriever, Katherine. He has two grown children, Harper and Mac, and a grandson, Brendan.
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