WHO and FAO investigate outbreaks in Vietnam
Officials at the World Health
Organization and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization are
talking with the Vietnamese government to send experts to investigate the source
of the bird flu outbreaks.
Animal health authorities in
Vietnam say they have already destroyed 24,000 birds in Ca Mau, Bac Lieu, and An
Giang provinces in an effort to stop the H5N1 flu virus from spreading.
Although Vietnam has a record of
acting quickly to control outbreaks, avian influenza broke out in three southern
Vietnamese provinces in December.
"The recent outbreak is not
surprising, because we know that the virus is still present," said Aphaluck
Bhatiasevi, a spokeswoman for the FAO's Hanoi office, stressing that more
information is needed to determine how the virus has spread.
Some international organizations
have looked to Vietnam as a model for other developing nations coping with bird
flu. A year ago, officials vaccinated tens of millions of chickens across the
country, and culled millions more to halt outbreaks.
Patrice Gautier, the head of
Veterinarians Without Borders' Vietnam office, says the government is still
doing a good job.
World Health Organization
United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization
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