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Health officals discuss stopping new diseases

Update: May, 13/2015 - 08:48
The Health Ministry and the World Health Organisation jointly held a conference in Ha Noi yesterday. — VNS Photo Duong Ngoc

HA NOI (VNS) — The Health Ministry and the World Health Organisation (WHO) jointly held a conference in Ha Noi yesterday to review the Asia-Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases (APSED) and International Health Regulations (IHR) to inform future operations in the field.

The IHR, in effect since June 15, 2007, is a legally binding document for all WHO member countries. The regulations aim to prevent and respond to acute public health risks that have the potential of crossing borders and thereby threatening the global population.

Meanwhile, the APSED, which was launched for the first time in 2005 and amended in 2010, is a regional strategy targeting improved capacity in managing and responding to emerging and existing diseases.

Addressing the event, Head of the Health Ministry's Preventive Medicine Department, Tran Dac Phu said that, after the passing of the IHR, the department was tasked with its coordination and implementation.

As part of efforts to realise the APSED, an emergency operations centre (EOC) was set up to cope with dangerous pandemics including Ebola, carried out an assessment of the risks of bird flu H7N9, and this year the ministry approved a programme to deal with emerging diseases and organise public health events.

Phu said the health sector would continue coordinating with other sectors to satisfy the WHO's "one health" initiative, which requires completing the EOC model and increasing supervision of several diseases that spread from animals to people.

During the conference, participants discussed a number of issues - the implementation of the IHR in Viet Nam, preparations for coping with urgent public health conditions, and the prevention and control of bacterial contamination. — VNS

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