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Avian Influenza in Vietnam: update

The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) received official information on 9 January 2004 from the Director of the Department of Animal Health of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in Hanoi, Vietnam about an outbreak of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (see www.oie.int/eng/info/hebdo/AIS_63.HTM).

As already published in a previous communiqué, the OIE is monitoring the epidemiological situation in South East Asian countries very closely with the support of the Member Countries involved.

A joint WHO/OIE/FAO Delegation of scientists and risk managers has started consultations and investigations in countries in Asia, starting with Vietnam.

The OIE expert, Dr. Véronique Jestin of the OIE Reference Laboratory in Ploufragan, France, has arrived today in Hanoi (Tuesday, January 20) joining the WHO/OIE/FAO task force. In collaboration with the Veterinary Authorities of Vietnam, she will assess the current epidemiological situation concerning avian influenza and provide advice in the definition of policies on diagnosis, control and eradication of the disease in animals.

The OIE will be in permanent contact with the team and will publish any new relevant information provided by the WHO/OIE/FAO task force.

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