Media campaign on bird flu: Indonesia
After international criticism of its attempts to fight bird flu,
Indonesia has launched a month-long, nationwide media campaign today to advise
people of what precautions to take against H5N1 avian influenza.
Public service announcements will highlight the importance of washing your
hands after handling poultry, and properly cooking poultry meat and eggs.
The campaign is also encouraging people to keep poultry out of their homes
and promptly report sick birds to authorities, as well as to seek treatment for
illnesses that follow contact with poultry.
"We want bird
flu to become part of history," said Bayu Krisnamurthi, head of the
country's avian flu commission in the Jakarta Post.
The campaign is sponsored by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the Japanese
government and supported by the World Health
A UNICEF official in Indonesia, Gianfranco Rotigliano, warned that the
government faces a "huge challenge" in trying to teach the rural population
about avian flu, given the country's great size and many ethnic groups.
The government said last month that about 30 million families keep backyard
chickens, and during avian flu containment efforts, many refuse to turn in their
birds despite offers of compensation.
Indonesia has had 60 human cases of H5N1 infection, 46 of them fatal, the
second highest case count (after Vietnam) and the highest death toll.
Read a related
news article about the WHO's response to Indonesia's efforts to fight bird
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