Avian flu has so far proved more fizzle than firecracker: It has killed fewer than 150 people, compared with the 35,000 Americans who die yearly from ordinary flu. But the scientific frenzy it sparked is paying off with an array of insights into how the next real epidemic might emerge.
Full article here.
My $0.02: It's too early to write off H5N1 as a non-event like the swine flu of the 1970s. And even if H5N1 does turn out to be a non-event, preparing for an epidemic is prudent, because it's only a matter of time before some other bug turns into a real epidemic.