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Friday, June 3, 2011

FAO warns Laos to stay alert against avian influenza

Via Xinhua :

" VIENTIANE, June 2 : The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) issued an early warning to Laos on Thursday for the country to stay alert to the possibility of fresh outbreaks of avian influenza.

FAO epidemiologist Dr. Joanna Mackenzie gave the warning in the Lao capital of Vientiane that the threat of an outbreak of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) remained real.

An FAO press release stressed the importance of protecting hands with plastic bags when people have to pick up sick or dead chickens or ducks, and wash hands thoroughly afterwards, as the virus can cause serious illness and death in humans.

In addition, it's important to report any unusual high death rate in poultry to the District Agriculture and Forestry Office (DAFO) to determine if it was caused by Avian Influenza, the press release said.

Since the first outbreak of HPAI in 2004, FAO has been providing technical support to the Lao Department of Livestock and Fisheries (DLF) in upgrading its readiness to detect and control HPAI."

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