Tuesday, May 29, 2007

World Health Assembly Emphasizes the Need for AI Preparedness

The World Health Assembly concluded last week with a resolution to prepare for a pandemic influenza. More than 2,400 people from WHO's 193 Member States, NGOs and other organizations attended the week-long assembly in Geneva. During the assembly, Member States jointly acknowledged the need for improving pandemic influenza preparedness. Collaborative initiatives to increase the production of vaccines and provide equitable access to them were identified as opportunities to enhance international preparedness. More specifically, the resolution delegated the task of sharing influenza viruses to the WHO Influenza Collaborating Centre Network and its H5 reference labs.

In her closing remarks, Director-General Margaret Chan underscored the importance of this decision by declaring that her "responsibilities in implementing the IHR depend on this sharing."


1 comment:

Glen A said...

Having a centralized place where researchers can share information on the different H5N1 strains all over the world looks to be an important development. But why do you think it's taken so long for this sharing network to be established? And should we expect this network will be utilized a lot?