Geiger Counters Have Sold Out in Paris, Manufacturer calls it "crazy"

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    Mar 22, 2011 7:52 PM GMT
    The nuclear paranoia is ridiculous. You'd think that some of these Europeans would be more um educated?

    http://techland.time.com/2011/03/21/its-true-geiger-counters-have-sold-out-in-paris/

    The rumor started spreading around Twitter early this morning: geiger counters are now sold out in Paris, it said. But is it true?

    Yes, it is. According to one manufacturer based in the French capital, panic buying has swamped suppliers not just there, but worldwide, since the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear alert in Japan.

    Olivier Martimort, general manager of Paris-based air analysis devices company NanoSense, told TechLand that when they opened for business last week, they sold more geiger counters by 10:30 a.m. than they had sold in the previous six years.

    "We are now out of stock," he said. "It's not just us, and not just in Paris. Geiger counters are going out of stock worldwide right now."

    "We have had emails from Japan, Malaysia, China, all over Asia, asking for products. We have had people saying they want to buy everything we have."
    NanoSense's products were never intended for personal use after a nuclear accident, he said, but the next batch of devices would include useful information for buyers in the instruction manual.

    Asked if the panic buying was a sign of consumers over-reacting, Mr Martimort was blunt:

    "In Europe, it makes no sense for people to be buying them for personal use here. It's crazy.

    "If you are importing goods from Japan and you are worried about them being radioactive, that's understandable. Or if you know someone, or employ someone, who is in the area. Then it makes sense."
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    Mar 22, 2011 8:02 PM GMT
    And yet some people won't get vaccinated for common diseases...and take megavitamins enough to kill a horse (or get a kidney stone).
    Here in all its glory: the law of supply and demand. Supply of false security, that is.
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    Mar 22, 2011 8:09 PM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidAnd yet some people won't get vaccinated for common diseases...and take megavitamins enough to kill a horse (or get a kidney stone).
    Here in all its glory: the law of supply and demand. Supply of false security, that is.


    Though as you may be aware, a big reason people don't get vaccinated is the lack of convenience. It's the law of supply and demand and in the case of vaccines the lack of supply or highly regulated supply (not to mention the warped markets of healthcare). That being said, while I think it's crazy people in Europe would buy geiger counters, I'm fully supportive if it provides some peace of mind - given that the costs of the disaster will be more psychological than physical.
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    Mar 22, 2011 8:15 PM GMT
    The vaccine market is one of the most regulated. And there's ample supply at least in the US. It's the demand that's depressed by false beliefs in the overall safety of vaccines. Viz. how whooping cough and measles are making a resurgence because not enough children are vaccinated.
    Flumist is even more convenient than the routine flu shot, and flu vaccination rates still suck.
    People cannot act on correct beliefs all the time; irrational fears and misguided beliefs are taken advantage of a lot of the times when there are runs on things like Geiger counters. I wish there were a run on vaccines more often.
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    Mar 22, 2011 8:22 PM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidThe vaccine market is one of the most regulated. And there's ample supply at least in the US. It's the demand that's depressed by false beliefs in the overall safety of vaccines. Viz. how whooping cough and measles are making a resurgence because not enough children are vaccinated.
    Flumist is even more convenient than the routine flu shot, and flu vaccination rates still suck.
    People cannot act on correct beliefs all the time; irrational fears and misguided beliefs are taken advantage of a lot of the times when there are runs on things like Geiger counters. I wish there were a run on vaccines more often.


    The problem as noted, is more convenience and time:
    http://www.rwjf.org/healthpolicy/publichealth/product.jsp?id=35693

    It is the points of distribution that are particularly regulated. I suspect the emergence of Walmart and Walgreen nurse practitioner clinics will help. Healthcare is becoming more user friendly in fits and spurts to the demands of consumers. The history of vaccine scares is however a sad but interesting one.
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    Mar 22, 2011 8:40 PM GMT
    I still disagree that people don't get vaccinated because it's inconvenient. Kids get to see their pediatricians (or nurse practitioners) and parents decline vaccinations WHILE the kids are in the office. No, they are acting on false beliefs, same thing as when they demand antibiotics for viral infections.

    Adults can make their own decisions, and not getting flu shots simply goes along with the low regard the American public has for prevention and primary care in general.

    Demand is good for everything else, but healthcare should not be primarily be based on demand. Good public health policy should be behind most health care practices, and relying on the market is abdication of responsibility.

    Now, Geiger counters obviously can be bought and sold in Paris without any regulations on who's buying them. I dread the day when antibiotics or vaccines can be bought without regulation because of a whim.
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    Mar 22, 2011 9:02 PM GMT
    I can't blame them, considering history:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chernobyl_Nuclear_Power_Plant_Exclusion_Zone


    The latest jingoism, 'radiation dissipation' inferring dissipation will make it harmless is suspect, to me. The gov't here is adding nine more radiation detectors to the BC coast.

    -Doug

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    Mar 23, 2011 12:14 AM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidNow, Geiger counters obviously can be bought and sold in Paris without any regulations on who's buying them. I dread the day when antibiotics or vaccines can be bought without regulation because of a whim.


    That certainly won't happen. Even physicians have a hard time controlling the judicious usage of antibiotics, such that some virulent strains thought to be limited to hospitals are now showing up in the community. If antibiotic prescriptions weren't regulated, the superbugs would mutate faster than the production of newer generation antibiotics. This also has implications for genetically modified crops. As for the Parisians, what are they going to do if they detect elevated radiation levels besides become hyper-hysteric?
    superbugs-may-push-us-into-world-without
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    Mar 23, 2011 12:16 AM GMT
    Sex may sell something, but fear will make something be sold out.
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    Mar 23, 2011 12:16 AM GMT
    It isn't called 'panic buying' for nothing.
  • musclmed

    Posts: 3274

    Mar 23, 2011 1:32 AM GMT
    dsmith123 said
    q1w2e3 saidNow, Geiger counters obviously can be bought and sold in Paris without any regulations on who's buying them. I dread the day when antibiotics or vaccines can be bought without regulation because of a whim.


    That certainly won't happen. Even physicians have a hard time controlling the judicious usage of antibiotics, such that some virulent strains thought to be limited to hospitals are now showing up in the community. If antibiotic prescriptions weren't regulated, the superbugs would mutate faster than the production of newer generation antibiotics. This also has implications for genetically modified crops. As for the Parisians, what are they going to do if they detect elevated radiation levels besides become hyper-hysteric?
    superbugs-may-push-us-into-world-without



    A patient brought a fairly lengthy "disaster list" today, and in this list compiled by some so called well meaning person is "internet idiot" with no credentials.

    Ask your doctor to give you a supply of Ciprofloxacin , Levaquin is better but more expensive.
    In addition Tamiflu., for pandemic viruses

    Truth is antibiotics are just tools, If you dont know what your doing, you can hurt yourself..

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    Mar 23, 2011 4:23 AM GMT
    musclmed said
    dsmith123 said
    q1w2e3 saidNow, Geiger counters obviously can be bought and sold in Paris without any regulations on who's buying them. I dread the day when antibiotics or vaccines can be bought without regulation because of a whim.


    That certainly won't happen. Even physicians have a hard time controlling the judicious usage of antibiotics, such that some virulent strains thought to be limited to hospitals are now showing up in the community. If antibiotic prescriptions weren't regulated, the superbugs would mutate faster than the production of newer generation antibiotics. This also has implications for genetically modified crops. As for the Parisians, what are they going to do if they detect elevated radiation levels besides become hyper-hysteric?
    superbugs-may-push-us-into-world-without



    A patient brought a fairly lengthy "disaster list" today, and in this list compiled by some so called well meaning person is "internet idiot" with no credentials.

    Ask your doctor to give you a supply of Ciprofloxacin , Levaquin is better but more expensive.
    In addition Tamiflu., for pandemic viruses

    Truth is antibiotics are just tools, If you dont know what your doing, you can hurt yourself..



    We know that (and the risk of C. diff, bacterial resistance, side effects like drug interactions with Cipro, etc), but does the American political machine which is hyperresponsive to the public in terms of hyped fears? Take antibiotics for livestock, for example. Good luck getting that regulated more stringently.

    I can't wait to see increased reports of hyperthyroidism induced by mass iodine ingestion due to Jod-Basedow phenomenon.
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    Mar 23, 2011 4:41 AM GMT
    q1w2e3 said
    musclmed said
    dsmith123 said
    q1w2e3 saidNow, Geiger counters obviously can be bought and sold in Paris without any regulations on who's buying them. I dread the day when antibiotics or vaccines can be bought without regulation because of a whim.


    That certainly won't happen. Even physicians have a hard time controlling the judicious usage of antibiotics, such that some virulent strains thought to be limited to hospitals are now showing up in the community. If antibiotic prescriptions weren't regulated, the superbugs would mutate faster than the production of newer generation antibiotics. This also has implications for genetically modified crops. As for the Parisians, what are they going to do if they detect elevated radiation levels besides become hyper-hysteric?
    superbugs-may-push-us-into-world-without



    A patient brought a fairly lengthy "disaster list" today, and in this list compiled by some so called well meaning person is "internet idiot" with no credentials.

    Ask your doctor to give you a supply of Ciprofloxacin , Levaquin is better but more expensive.
    In addition Tamiflu., for pandemic viruses

    Truth is antibiotics are just tools, If you dont know what your doing, you can hurt yourself..



    We know that (and the risk of C. diff, bacterial resistance, side effects like drug interactions with Cipro, etc), but does the American political machine which is hyperresponsive to the public in terms of hyped fears? Take antibiotics for livestock, for example. Good luck getting that regulated more stringently.

    I can't wait to see increased reports of hyperthyroidism induced by mass iodine ingestion due to Jod-Basedow phenomenon.

    Saw that last week.icon_lol.gif He was from CA and was worried about the wind. Also used amiodarone.
  • musclmed

    Posts: 3274

    Mar 23, 2011 5:51 AM GMT
    I wish the FDA, would step in and grow a set and make an example of one of these so called experts sometimes doctors, who give advice x, y or z for this condition or scenario.

    Not in a legal fashion but a public denunciation.
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    Mar 23, 2011 7:11 AM GMT
    carminea said
    q1w2e3 said
    musclmed said
    dsmith123 said
    q1w2e3 saidNow, Geiger counters obviously can be bought and sold in Paris without any regulations on who's buying them. I dread the day when antibiotics or vaccines can be bought without regulation because of a whim.


    That certainly won't happen. Even physicians have a hard time controlling the judicious usage of antibiotics, such that some virulent strains thought to be limited to hospitals are now showing up in the community. If antibiotic prescriptions weren't regulated, the superbugs would mutate faster than the production of newer generation antibiotics. This also has implications for genetically modified crops. As for the Parisians, what are they going to do if they detect elevated radiation levels besides become hyper-hysteric?
    superbugs-may-push-us-into-world-without



    A patient brought a fairly lengthy "disaster list" today, and in this list compiled by some so called well meaning person is "internet idiot" with no credentials.

    Ask your doctor to give you a supply of Ciprofloxacin , Levaquin is better but more expensive.
    In addition Tamiflu., for pandemic viruses

    Truth is antibiotics are just tools, If you dont know what your doing, you can hurt yourself..



    We know that (and the risk of C. diff, bacterial resistance, side effects like drug interactions with Cipro, etc), but does the American political machine which is hyperresponsive to the public in terms of hyped fears? Take antibiotics for livestock, for example. Good luck getting that regulated more stringently.

    I can't wait to see increased reports of hyperthyroidism induced by mass iodine ingestion due to Jod-Basedow phenomenon.

    Saw that last week.icon_lol.gif He was from CA and was worried about the wind. Also used amiodarone.



    @musclmed - I agree about the internet (and TV medical pundits) being poor, and sometimes harmful, substitutes for physicians who actually see the patient. It's best to let the patient know why a treatment they propose is not indicated (or even relevant), but some difficult patients who think they have the same knowledge base and medical decision-making capabilities as their physician need to be reminded that they can seek healthcare elsewhere. I'm sure we all know the pushover physicians who, whether due to time restraints or wanting "repeat business," submit to such demands requests by the patient.

    @q1w2e3 - Fortunately, livestock are not humans. Any decision by lawmakers to take antibiotic prescription control out of the hands of physicians and other licensed clinicians would require testimony, debate, etc. In the event of a disaster, I have not seen (either in real life or in the movies) an instance where the norms of prescription / prescription filling are temporarily halted.

    @carminea - Wow, I have yet to see such a case. Was it due to his antiarrhythmic only, or had he also taken iodine?
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    Mar 23, 2011 7:11 AM GMT
    musclmed saidI wish the FDA, would step in and grow a set and make an example of one of these so called experts sometimes doctors, who give advice x, y or z for this condition or scenario.

    Not in a legal fashion but a public denunciation.


    I agree. Unfortunately, snake oil sales(wo)men have always been in medicine. Some are more transparent than others. Modern day versions range from Dr. Oz to Dr. Jarvik. Part of the blame also has to be assigned to the consumers of television (i.e., the patients), who equate the television doctor (and even non-physicians like Kevin Trudeau) with other so-called TV role models. What they fail to understand is that medicine is not a one-size-fits all solution and the best provision of healthcare is going to be by the physicians that actually have access to and have reviewed the patient's medical record. This article on medical punditry in the 1920s provides an interesting historical perspective about this intractable problem in the field.