Sunday, May 07, 2006

May 7 Flu Update

Promed/OIE. Bird flu remains present in 7 Russian regions.

ProMed...stronger measures being taken in the Ivory Coast now that flu has been confirmed.

Candidates for EU membership are being pressed on food safety prior to being admitted.

The Ameircan Veterinary Medicine Association is critical of the upcoming TV movie on the bird flu, saying it could inspire unneeded panic.

Helen Branswell back today---Dr. Nabarro says too little money is earmarked for Middle East and Africa, our newest flu fronts.

"No part of the UN system has got anything like enough money for the work it's trying to do," Nabarro said in an interview with The Canadian Press.

"And frankly, the resources for African nations and the resources for Middle Eastern nations are really very, very slight."


Bermuda is beginning to educate the public on the bird flu. Interesting note, as I am currently reading Collapse by Jared Diamonds. Bermuda wonders what it would do if the US--which it is heavily reliant on for trade-closed its borders.

In Pennsylvania, they are worried about the potential for infection of free range chickens...as they interact with wild birds.

Ohio is beginning surveillance of chickens and wild birds for the bird flu.

Mekong conducted a major exercise to plan for a pandemic.

The Government in India says the bird flu is under control.

Two years after the first bird flu scare, India's poultry breeders are finally beginning to put things together again.

WHO tells Middle East countries to start producing Tamiflu on their own, and not to rely on outside suppliers.


Effect Measure crticizes WHO for continuing to press its pandemic containment plan. While I continue to be surprised that the idea continues to have currency, I'm not sure that talking about it is dishonest.

Interesting. Bangkok editorial says that bird flu is something to worry about. Check out their response to the US "don't look to the feds" warnings.

Apart from the Da Nang conference and its realistic approach to fighting a biological threat, the United States provided a model to consider. The central government told states and towns that they would be responsible for battling a disease outbreak. In the first hours and days of such a problem, Washington could provide few supplies and little help.

This attitude should be applied in a suitable manner to Thailand. Distances are shorter, yet time saved in isolating and fighting an epidemic is of the essence. Filling forms and arranging transport for medicine, for example, will not just cost lives but allow the disease to spread beyond the first houses and villages. The local response will be the key to containing an outbreak, and more people need to be brought into the disease-fighting network.

Apparently, there was debate in Pakistan about whether to broadcast the health secretary eating chicken.

Reuters on firms with bird flu backup plans.

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