Lack of funds complicates fight against avian flu

first_imgNov 15, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – In China, Indonesia, and Vietnam, countries widely seen as ground zero in the global fight against H5N1 avian influenza, efforts to quash the virus are hampered by the lack of a key weapon: money.Organizations such as the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the World Bank have made urgent calls for a quick infusion of aid to Southeast Asia. Yet little of the promised funding has materialized, hobbling the cash-strapped countries’ efforts to contain the virus.The World Bank earlier this month offered up to $500 million to fight avian flu and hoped to have money flowing to needy nations by December, according to a Nov 4 news release. It estimated the potential cost of a human flu pandemic at $800 billion in one year.In addition, the World Bank is seeking contributions from developing countries as well as other donors to create an ongoing funding mechanism to bolster the $500 million, starting next year, said Jim Adams, World Bank vice president for operations policy and country services.Compensating farmers for culled poultry is one key to stemming H5N1, Adams said in the news release.”Obviously for farmers, particularly poor rural farmers, this is their income. If they are properly compensated and paid an appropriate market price for their animals, culling programs will be successful,” Adams said. “If they’re not properly compensated, experience shows, they’ll find another way of getting animals to market and the problem will expand.”Lack of money also endangers surveillance and vaccination efforts, Bernard Vallatt, director general of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), told Reuters news service in a story published today.”The problem is money. Indonesia and Vietnam are the top priorities which need global help,” Vallatt said.A senior government official in Vietnam told Reuters last week that the country needs about $150 million in international aid, but has received only $10 million to date.Vaccination urged in Southeast AsiaCulling and vaccination efforts in Vietnam have been plagued by financial concerns, among other problems.Officials have told farmers in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to kill or sell their poultry by Nov 21, CBS reported. They will be paid only half the current market value for poultry destroyed by the deadline. Live birds found after Nov 21 will be culled with no compensation.China will ship 45 tons of avian flu vaccine for poultry, worth $780,000, to Vietnam, CBS news reported today, but vaccine alone doesn’t address all of the financial problems associated with the campaign.Low wages for people giving the vaccinations in Vietnam are hampering the aggressive campaign, the Bangkok Post reported today. About 109 million birds have been vaccinated in Vietnam, but the country still reported outbreaks in 61 communes between Oct 1 and Nov 14, the story said.Indonesia launches plan, seeks grantsIn Indonesia, soldiers and volunteers will go door-to-door starting in the Jakarta area to find H5N1-infected poultry, the government announced yesterday, according to today’s Jakarta Post.”We have to address this problem quickly,” President Susilo Bamban Yudhoyono said yesterday. “There must be an intensive campaign to make the public aware of the virus.”The FAO is assisting Indonesia with surveillance efforts, and the Jakarta Post reports today that the World Bank president has offered help to Indonesia to fund a mass cull.”Stamping out [avian flu] would not be easy as it would need billions of rupiah,” Susilo noted in his response.The Indonesian government’s avian flu plan includes searching door-to-door for infected poultry, designating people to constantly monitor the outbreaks, increasing vaccine and antiviral supplies, ordering state pharmaceutical maker PT Bio Farma to make vaccines, increasing the amount of money allocated to fight avian flu by about US $35 million next year, and seeking grants from international donors.Chinese farmer can’t recoup costsThe containment efforts in China could drastically affect farmers. A story published online today in China Daily offered an example of the impact on poultry farmers in Heishan County in hard-hit Liaoning province.Jiang Lianfu in Yingfang village had 13,000 hens. They appeared healthy, but they were slaughtered in a regional mass cull of 6 million poultry because dead ducks were found near his farm, China Daily reported.Jiang had spent about US $24,700 to establish his henhouse, half of it borrowed.”I planned to pay back the loan at the end of the year and borrow more money to expand the farm,” Jiang told China Daily. Instead, he received about $1.20 for each bird culled, or $15,600, not enough to cover his investment.His family watched the cull, Jiang told the newspaper. “We just stood there and watched as the birds’ necks were wrung.”See also:World Bank news release on global avian flu programlast_img read more

Can you catch COVID-19 from delivered packages?

first_imgAn outbreak of COVID-19 at a logistics center run by one of South Korea’s largest online shopping companies has raised concerns over whether the virus can be transmitted by package deliveries.Who’s been infected?More than 117 cases of COVID-19 have been linked to the warehouse near Seoul owned by e-commerce giant Coupang facility. No cases have been related to deliveries and South Korean health officials have played down the chance of infection from packages. The World Health Organization (WHO) has cited laboratory research that found the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 could persist for up to 24 hours on cardboard and 72 hours on plastic and stainless steel.Kim Woo-joo, a professor of Infectious Diseases at Korea University Guro Hospital, said the virus could also survive on surfaces like bubble wrap.”The virus can last up to 24 hours on cardboards and over three days on hard surfaces like stainless steel. There is no research on bubble wraps yet, but it could be between a cardboard and a stainless steel,” he said.Speedy delivery dangers?Many of South Korea’s e-commerce brands are known for their less-than-24-hour “bullet delivery”. Both Coupang and Market Kurly, which have reported infections from their logistics centers, provide fast grocery delivery services.This could raise the risk of spreading the virus, as packages don’t sit for long, some experts said.”We should take into account the temperature and the humidity of the package, but there is a possibility of infection as they pack it overnight,” said Shin Hyoung-shik, president of the Korean Society for Zoonoses, a leading expert in infectious diseases.However, Ki Mo-ran, professor of cancer control and population health at the National Cancer Center, said it was not so easy to contaminate packaging, and people should be safe as long as they wash their hands.”Just a small amount of virus is not that contagious … the handles of a public restroom could be more dangerous.” While infection from touching surfaces of boxes or bubble wraps couriered by an infected logistics center worker would be concerning, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said transmission in this manner was unlikely.”There has been no precedent of a global transmission so far from delivered packages,” Vice Health Minister Kim Gang-lip told a briefing.But health authorities and infectious disease experts have not ruled out the possibility of infection if a person touches their eyes, nose or mouth after contact with a contaminated package.Contaminated surfacescenter_img Topics :last_img read more

Racing action in Clonmel

first_imgThe front running Dazzling Suzie will bid to burn off her seven rivals in the Carrick on Suir Mares Handicap Hurdle .Among her rivals in the 3.35 are the Pat Fahy-trained Good As Gold and Curragh No Gold from the Harry Kelly stable.While in the 4.35, Paul Nolan’s Horse No Name will be bidding for victory in the Slievenamon Beginners chance after a string of solid efforts in defeat. Today’s 7 race card at Powerstown Park gets underway at 2.30 with the going described as soft to heavy.last_img read more

NBA Draft: Los Angeles Lakers select Brandon Ingram with No. 2 pick

first_imgWith the Lakers 30th out of 30 NBA teams in 3-point percentage last season (31.7), Ingram should boost those numbers after shooting 41 percent from behind the perimeter with the Blue Devils. With the Lakers finishing 27th in total defense last season (106.9 points per allowed), Ingram’s history in defending the opposing team’s top scorer could improve those rankings, too.The Lakers also became impressed with Ingram’s respectful demeanor. They interviewed him at the pre-draft combine in Chicago in May and also dined with him the night before his pre-draft workout about two weeks ago at the Lakers’ practice facility in El Segundo.Ingram has fielded plenty of questions about his weight considering few expect his listed 6’9”, 190-pound frame to absorb the daily physical poundings in the NBA. Yet, Ingram has continuously increased weight in both fat and muscle through extensive weight-training and highly caloric diets. Those close to Ingram believe he will eventually overcome that because of his other positive attributes.The Lakers also have the 32nd pick on Thursday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. In a move that carried less drama than a bland Hollywood script, the Lakers selected a player in the NBA draft on Thursday that many expected would wear a purple and gold uniform.The Lakers drafted Duke forward Brandon Ingram with their No. 2 pick, providing an immediate replacement at the small forward spot that Kobe Bryant left vacant following a storied 20-year NBA career. The move may have lacked any element of surprise, but draft selection could still eventually lead to a blockbuster.It’s far too early, of course, to project the 18-year-old Ingram’s future after he won the ACC’s freshman of the year award during his lone season at Duke. But Ingram should complement Lakers’ promising young core to remove the stench from finishing last season with the worst record in franchise history. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more