“Bird flu” is an infection caused by avian influenza viruses.
STUTTGART, Germany – Officials are meeting in Stuttgart this week to plan for how best to deal with a potential outbreak of avian influenza that could mutate into a pandemic flu.
Conference attendees, including subject matter experts from throughout the region, are creating a comprehensive plan in coordination with U.S.
European Command, host nations, the Department of Defense and other governmental agencies to deal with a possible pandemic caused by the mutation of the H5N1 influenza virus, more commonly known as “bird flu,” that is currently circulating through domestic and wild bird flocks around the world.
“Due to the serious consequences presented by a potential pandemic, and in support of U.S. government worldwide efforts, EUCOM is coordinating with appropriate organizations and governments to ensure that people are protected and informed,” said Lt. Col. Ron Sanders, the lead project officer for EUCOM’s pandemic influenza response team.
The DOD, Department of State, Health and Human Services, World Health Organization and other governments and agencies are preparing for a possible pandemic – a global outbreak of disease – of avian influenza. These organizations are building on the knowledge and experience from other recent public health crises, including SARS and the 2001 anthrax attacks, to meet the threat of a pandemic outbreak. EUCOM and its component commands are continuing the planning process to protect their servicemembers, family members and employees while maintaining operational readiness.
Tips to minimize your risk of contracting
– Practice basic
– Get the seasonal
– Avoid going to
– Avoid fresh
– If traveling to
– Cook all poultry
– Buy food from approved
– Phone your health
The presence of even a limited number of human cases of avian influenza has raised concerns that the current situation could become a pandemic if the virus develops the ability to spread from human to human. If such a situation should occur in Europe, the EUCOM plan suggests individuals should be prepared to increase good personal hygiene practices such as hand washing, cough and sneeze etiquette, and care in food preparation.
In the event of an epidemic avian influenza outbreak, social distancing, isolation and quarantine procedures may have to be implemented. Social distancing includes limiting social gatherings and interactions such as attending school, churches, civic clubs and groups, and work activities. Local commanders and health officials will notify personnel of specific procedures on their installations.
Some existing antiviral treatments are available to