Greater efforts on bird flu control urged
Updated: 2005-11-07 09:43
Chinese Vice-Premier Hui Liangyu on Sunday ordered all localities and
departments to work harder to resolutely prevent the spread of bird flu epidemic
and any human infection of the virus.
"We should concretely enhance our sense of urgency and responsibility in the
prevention and control of the highly pathogenic bird flu," said Hui, who heads a
national working team on the prevention and control of such disease, at a
national television and telephone conference.
Hui said the disease has become the number one killer for China's poultry
husbandry and a major threat to public health and security.
"We must be clear-headed about this, conduct scientific assessment and make
ample preparations for it. We should by no means slacken our vigilance," said
He stressed the necessity to put the interests of the people first, give
priorities to prevention, improve the contingency arrangements and implement a
responsibility system in the work.
Hui listed several tasks that need to be done, including beefing up the
monitoring, alert and forecast systems, improving contingency plans and
arrangements, enhancing immunization, strengthening international exchanges and
cooperation, and maintaining a sound market environment for healthy poultry and
Meanwhile, efforts should be made to establish a prevention andcontrol
mechanism with long-lasting effects, he said.
He added that funds for animal epidemic prevention should be increased, a
team of grass-roots veterinarians should be well trained and maintained,
research of the epidemic prevention and control technology should be enhanced,
and vaccines and medicines should be prepared and stored up in advance.
"The mode of operation of the poultry husbandry should also be modified to
ensure sustained and healthy development of the sector," said Hui.
China's Ministry of Health on Sunday gave a briefing on three pneumonia cases
of unknown causes in Xiangtan County, central China's Hunan Province, where an
H5N1 bird flu epidemic broke out recently.
"After conducting comprehensive analysis, experts said although the three
cases are diagnosed as pneumonia of unknown causes at present, the possibility
of human infection of the highly deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu cannot be ruled
out," a spokesman for the ministry said.