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Measures taken to control bird flu

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  • Measures taken to control bird flu


    Measures taken to control bird flu
    Saturday, November 29, 2008
    By By Our Correspondent

    ON THE instructions of Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif, the Health Department, with the collaboration of other departments concerned, has started taking precautionary measures to control Avian Influenza (bird flu) among human beings during the winter.

    In this connection, a meeting of the officers of health, livestock, wildlife departments and the veterinary research institute was held under the chairmanship of the Punjab Health Services director general here on Friday.

    According to a handout, Health DG Dr Muhammad Aslam Chaudhry informed the meeting that the chief minister had demanded the departments concerned to take all possible precautionary measures during the winter to control bird flu in the province. Therefore, a mechanism should be evolved by identifying the responsibilities of each department, he added.

    The meeting was told that the Punjab Health Department would organise training workshop in Lahore for Health district officers (DOs) of each district, a physician, a nurse, a laboratory technician and one focal person each from livestock and wildlife departments. The workshop would be organised in the first week of the next month. During the first phase of the campaign against bird flu, 16 districts, considered to be sensitive due to large number of poultry farms, would be given priority.

    They are: Lahore, Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Jhang, TT Singh, Sheikhupura, Okara, Muzaffargar, Bahawalpur, DG Khan, Rahimyar Khan, Jehlum, Gujrat, Gujranwala, Attock and Multan.

    The Punjab chief secretary, according to the Health DG, had issued directions for reactivation of already constituted committees, headed by the DCOs for this purpose. The meeting decided that the Livestock Department would register all the poultry farms while the TMAs would collect data of chicken shops.

    It was decided that training workshops would be organised for the owners and workers of poultry farms at districts and tehsil levels to educate them about handling the birds while protecting themselves. Moreover, awareness seminars would also be organised at the tehsil level. The meeting recommended that if any bird was found H5-N1 positive in any district, the livestock officer concerned would immediately inform the Health EDO and the focal person in Lahore Dr Ziaur Rehman, director CDC, so that the people of the area could be protected from the virus. For this purpose, a surveillance system would also be improved with the close coordination as well as liaison among the departments concerned.