BIRD FLU UPDATE / NABARRO

12-May-2006
David Nabarro, Senior United Nations System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza today tells UNIFEED that governments must remain vigilant and prepared even when the threat of H5N1 virus wanes in their countries. UNIFEED
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STORY: BIRD FLU UPDATE / NABARRO
TRT: 3.15
SOURCE: UNIFEED / PAHO / UNIC
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS
DATELINE: 12 MAY2006, NEW YORK CITY / FILE
SHOTLIST
UNIFEED - FILE
1. Wide shot, exterior, United Nations
2. Med shot, UN flag
UNIFEED - 12 MAY 2006, NEW YORK CITY
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. David Nabarro, Senior UN System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza:
"So keeping up the pressure, keeping up vigilance, keeping up early detection and quick response to bird flu is absolutely critical even in countries it seems the situation is coming under control."
FILE: PAHO - 2003, COLOMBIA
4. Various shots, roosters in farm
5. Various shot, chicks
UNIFEED - 12 MAY 2006, NEW YORK CITY
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. David Nabarro, Senior UN System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza:
"I've just heard of a young girl die of H5N1 bird flu in a small East African country of Djibouti. It's a sad piece of news. It's once again a reminding us that children are particularly at risk of bird flu. It seems that children and adults are the most likely to get infected and our reasoning is that they are most likely to be exposed because they are so close to the birds."
FILE - UNICEF - MARCH 2006, EGYPT
6. Various shots, Alexandria streets
UNIFEED - 12 MAY 2006, NEW YORK CITY
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. David Nabarro, Senior UN System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza:
"I'm really pleased with progress in Egypt, which was a country that was very badly affected by Avian Flu quite critically some months ago but during the last few weeks firstly many of the human cases, the 15 human cases, many of them, 10 of them have survived. And that's a good record."
FILE- UNIC (NAIROBI) - 10-11 NOVEMBER 2005, KENYA, NAIROBI
8. Various shots, wild birds
UNIFEED - 12 MAY 2006, NEW YORK CITY
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. David Nabarro, Senior UN System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza:
"I think that more recent work has suggested that its very, very rare that wild birds are carrying the virus at least birds that are moving into Africa. Although this doesn't least suggest that the very high risk that we were anticipating associated with wild birds might have been a transient phenomenon following a major exposure of wild birds towards the end of 2005."
FILE - PAHO - 2003, COLOMBIA
10. Various shots, farmer with chicks
UNIFEED - 12 MAY 2006, NEW YORK CITY
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. David Nabarro, Senior UN System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza:
"You get one report which looks good, don't assume that just because there's one good report, that we can feel relieved. The fact is that there's quite a lot of less good reports around and we have to put them alongside each other and try to form an integrated pattern as we figure out what's happening."
FILE - UNIC (NAIROBI) - 10-11 NOVEMBER 2005, KENYA, NAIROBI
8. Various shots, wild birds
STORYLINE
David Nabarro, Senior United Nations System Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza says governments must remain vigilant and prepared even when the threat of H5N1 virus wanes in their countries.
In an interview with UNIFEED at the United Nations in New York, Nabarro said that a 2-year-old girl infected with the H5N1 virus in Djibouti has died. It is the first the first confirmed human bird flu case in sub-Saharan Africa. The Djibouti government confirmed three chickens also had been infected with the virus.
When asked about government preparedness and whether countries are implementing following through on their bird flu preparedness plans, Nabarro used Egypt as an example, stating that it was a country badly affected by the virus but in the last few weeks, ten out of their fifteen human cases of bird flu have survived.
Asked about a recent New York Times report that said flocks of migratory wild birds that flew south to Africa last fall and then back to Europe did not carry the H5N1 virus, Nabarro said this suggests that now the occurrence could be very rare.
He added that one must not focus on a single positive report because there are many reports that are not as positive and that the reports need to be compared and looked at as a whole in order to get a clear overview of the situation.
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