Avian Flu Spreads, UN Prepares for Human Pandemic

WHO: Affected countries with confirmed
human cases of H5N1 avian influenza
since 2003

“With wild birds spreading the avian flu virus further into Africa and Europe, the United Nations system was stepping up assistance to countries in their efforts to contain the virus in birds and conducting simulation exercises to prepare strategies for quick action on a human future pandemic, the official in charge of the effort said today.

“Frankly, there will be a pandemic, sooner or later,” Dr. David Nabarro, the UN System’s Coordinator for Avian and Human Influenza told correspondents at UN Headquarters in New York as he updated them on developments since his mission to China in mid-January. “It might be due to H5N1 or to some other influenza virus and it could start any time,” he said. “We have to behave as though this could start any time, because if we don’t, we will put off getting prepared.” [Read more]

Also see:

Bird Flu Could Reach Americas in 6 Months

UN Officials Rehearse Plans for Bird Flu Pandemic

World Health Organization: Avian influenza complete coverage