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Bird Flu simulation involving 300 people held in South Sulawesi, Indonesia Print E-mail
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ศุกร์, 28 พฤศจิกายน 2008

following recent hospitalization of 17 persons for suspected bird flu


The November 24 edition of the Jakarta Post reported that Makassar, South Sulawesi, Indonesia carried out a bird flu outbreak simulation on November 22 that involved 300 people from multiple organizations. This newspaper article, written by Andi Hajramurni, closed with the statement: “Meanwhile, seven of the 17 bird flu suspected patients in Wahidin Sudirohusodo general hospital in Makassar who have been declared bird flu free have been sent home, while the rest were still at the hospital, for further treatment.”


The simulation of an outbreak of H5N1 avian influenza among people included participants from the “Health Agency, the Food Self-Reliance and Marine Agency, the Education Agency, the Communication Agency, the National Police, the Indonesian Army and the public service center.”  Such a multidisciplinary approach to a influenza outbreak in humans and poultry was also taken in the longer, 3-day simulation pandemic flu epicenter exercise in Bali, Indonesia last April 25-27 of this year.


In this November 22 simulation, the region “was declared a pandemic-affected area and had to be closed or isolated. Only the authorities, who wore protective suits…were permitted to enter the affected area.” They also “prepared an emergency post, shelters, and a communal kitchen in the sterile zone for evacuees.”


Such a simulation exercise, being organized so rapidly after the hospitalization of 17 persons for suspected H5N1 avian influenza (“bird flu”) in Makassar, South Sulawesi is admirable.  Such a training exercise can be particularly helpful in terms of risk communication messaging, and multi-sectorial  community preparedness and response should an outbreak of avian/pandemic flu occur, whether in Sulawesi or any of the thousands of other islands in the Indonesian Archipelago.


SOURCE www.bepast.org

Daniel R. Lucey, MD, MPH

EROne Institutes, Department of Emergency Medicine

Washington Hospital Center

Adjunct Professor of Microbiology and Immunology

Georgetown University Medical Center

Washington, D.C.

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