Dh100m bird flu contingency plan ready

ABU DHABI — The Dh100 million plan of the National Committee for Emergency Response to Bird Flu is ready and will now be submitted to the cabinet, it was announced yesterday.

By Atef Hanafi

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Published: Thu 16 Mar 2006, 10:15 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 7:30 PM

The plan was endorsed by Shaikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the committee.

Majed Al Mansouri, Secretary-General of the Environment Agency, Abu Dhabi, said the contingency plan, which was approved at a meeting held on Tuesday at Al Nakheel Palace in the presence of Lt.-General Shaikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Interior, and Shaikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Presidential Affairs, would be submitted to the federal council of ministers for final approval.

The meeting, he said, discussed a draft decision authorising Shaikh Hamdan or his deputy, to declare a state of emergency, issue orders for confiscation and culling of bird flu-infected birds and use all human resources of all the authorities concerned to put the plan in place.

Shaikh Mansour said that Lt.-Gen. Shaikh Saif had underlined the vital need for launching massive awareness campaigns through different media outlets and posters to educate the public about the disease.

He disclosed that some revisions had been made to the emergency plan before it was passed by the committee.

According to him, the plan features five phases: general review, investigation, follow up and emergency and finally control of infected areas after the outbreak of the disease.

The meeting also reviewed a resolution to be issued by the cabinet with regard to the formation of local committees and implementation of a mock trial in the next weeks. ''We are currently drawing the potential scenarios and conducting training courses before we implement it,'' he added.

The emergency plan, he noted will cost Dh100 million and that incinerators will be received within the next two weeks. On the preventive medicine side, Shaikh Mansour pointed out that 150,000 tablets of the Tamiflu were at hand. ''The focus is now on the monitoring of migratory birds. Results of 6,000 tests conducted in Abu Dhabi had been negative,'' he maintained.

On the role of the Poultry Producers' Association, he said a meeting would be held next week to explore a mechanism for creating an official body through which it could act.

Ministers of health and environment and water, Armed Forces Chief of Staff and representatives from the Environmental Agency, Abu Dhabi, Municipalities Secretariat General, Federal Customs Authority and Department of Health and Medical Services in Dubai attended the meeting.

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