Flu Bird flu in UK 'to last five years'

Discussion in 'Survival Medicine' started by melbo, Feb 28, 2006.

  1. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member


    Bird flu in UK 'to last five years'
    LONDON, Feb.28 (Ananova): The Government's Chief Scientific Adviser has predicted bird flu will arrive in the UK and remain for at least five years. Professor Sir David King said he feared the disease could possibly become "endemic" in Britain. Sir David told the BBC: "I would anticipate that avian flu will arrive at some point in the UK. We also have to anticipate that it will be here for five years plus. We are talking about the possibility of this disease being endemic here in the UK as it did in China. It is a long-term factor." He had earlier ruled out the use of the currently available bird flu vaccines in the event of a UK outbreak, but conceded they may have to be used if the outbreak was widespread. "The Chinese have adopted the position of mass vaccination, and if it became so widespread here we might have to go down that route even with the vaccination not being very good," he said. Sir David added that he expected bird flu to reach UK shores in months, rather than days or weeks, due to the pattern of migratory paths. On Monday, he said the existing H5N1 inoculation would mask signs of the virus in birds but not prevent its spread. Rare breeds of birds kept in zoos would be the only cases where vaccines would be feasible. The inoculation of organic or free range birds would not be recommended. Sir David said the UK was currently monitoring the development in China of a new vaccine against the H5N1 strain of avian flu. His comments followed his appearance at the National Farmers' Union conference in Birmingham on Monday. Source: Ananova
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