Feeds

Bird flu stoppable, says WHO

Quick action will save lives

Seven Steps to Software Security

Although the threat of a bird flu pandemic continues to grow, quick action by governments and health organisations can prevent a widescale outbreak among humans, Reuters reports.

Speaking at a two-day bird flu conference in Tokyo, Shigeru Omi, the World Health Organisation's regional director for the Western Pacific, said: "As the new cases of human infection with the H5N1 virus in Turkey show, the situation is worsening with each passing month and the threat of an influenza pandemic is continuing to grow every day.

"We must try to ensure that we will be ready to respond instantly with all the weapons at our disposal should the early signs of an influenza pandemic appear. If we can achieve this rapid response, we may have a good chance of halting the spread of the virus before the situation becomes uncontrollable, or at least of slowing it down. But if we fail, the consequences for societies, economies and global public health could be immeasurable."

WHO has fingered the casue of the recent Turkey outbreak as "weak surveillance". WHO consultant Doctor Hitoshi Oshitani noted that it had taken local authorities more than 16 days to report a bird flu outbreak to the organisation. He said: "The way we are doing this now is too late. We must shorten the duration between detection and reporting so we can contain the virus." Oshitani added less than two weeks should be the goal.

Regarding practical measures to combat the H5N1, Omi concluded by warning against over-reliance on drugs such as Tamiflu. "Vaccines and anti-viral drugs are very effective. But they are not panaceas," he said.

The current official bird flu death toll stands at 78. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists
Researchers, advocates, health workers among those on shot-down plane
World Solar Challenge contender claims new speed record
One charge sees Sunswift travel 500kms at over 100 km/h
Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Eccentric billionaire Musk gets his PRIVATE SPACEPORT
In the Lone Star State, perhaps appropriately enough
SMELL YOU LATER, LOSERS – Dumbo tells rats, dogs... humans
Junk in the trunk? That's what people have
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.