Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Bhutan : Stepping up measures to prevent entry of influenza A (H1N1)

June 14: The government has beefed up measures to prevent influenza A (H1N1) also referred to as swine flu from entering the Kingdom.

Cases have already been reported in India as well in Thailand. Influenza A (H1N1) has already been reported in neighbouring India as well as in Thailand. The government has beefed up measures at all entry and exit points to ensure that the virus does not enter Bhutan.

At the Paro Airport, health officials are thoroughly checking and screening all the arriving passengers.

The health ministry says people should not panic but follow good hygiene practices, avoid crowds, and use a handkerchief while coughing.

The health ministry says people should avoid traveling abroad especially to the affected countries. Those who have been to affected countries are asked to seek immediate medical check up if they show flu like symptoms.

The health ministry is also monitoring other entry points.

A pandemic preparedness plan is also ready just in case.

Guidelines for management and treatment have also been developed and advocacy programs like posters and leaflets distributed to the public. A Rapid Response or Outbreak Investigation team has also been formed.

The Health Ministry also has a hotline for inquiries or assistance regarding influenza A (H1N1). The number is 107.


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