Wednesday, September 27, 2006


From the International Herald Tribune :
Members of a pandemic flu task force discussed how they might advise the World Health Organization if a global outbreak strikes, in the group's first meeting since being formed by the WHO, officials said Tuesday.

Sixteen of the 21 experts on the Ad Hoc Influenza Pandemic Task Force met in Geneva on Monday to define their role if a pandemic flu strain was identified...

Responses could include a rapid containment effort in the early stages of a pandemic, alerting governments to risk and accelerating vaccine production.

The task force also can give guidance on issues such as sharing between laboratories of virus specimens being monitored or used to make vaccines, said Dr. David Heymann, WHO's top flu official.

The task force, which only would be called in emergencies, has a mandate to work until June 15, when WHO's revised International Health Regulations come into effect. Most governments have adopted the regulations on preventing and responding to infectious disease threats.

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