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Avian Flu: Preparations and Staying Aware of the Facts

March 14, 2006

Avian Flu: Preparations and Staying Aware of the Facts
March 14, 2006 – The World Tourism Organization held the first of four briefing sessions to proactively discuss the effects of a potential outbreak of an avian flu pandemic Friday at the ITB travel trade show in Berlin. UNWTO Secretary-General Francesco Frangialli stressed that the human toll of the disease has been limited, and does not inhibit travel whatsoever, adding that meetings have already taken place with the World Health Organization over the global preparedness for avian flu.

"There is no problem for the industry today," said Frangialli. "There is absolutely no risk for traveling to any destination in the world."

Travel Weekly is reporting that a new survey shows 100 Fortune 500 companies are currently implementing plans in preparation for a possible avian flu pandemic.

These companies are putting plans in place such as traveler locator services (76 percent); employee health-risk mitigation training (73 percent); formalized work-from-home policies (70 percent); and stockpiling sterile masks and gloves (41 percent).

"The survey confirms something we’ve been seeing happen incrementally," Dr. Myles Druckman, vice president of medical assistance for International SOS said in a statement. "Organizations with distributed, global workforces want to be as prepared as they can be for the potential of pandemic — and the ability to track and manage employee travel, especially in areas of elevated risk, is central to those efforts."

To read the full Travel Weekly article, click here. You can also view relevant information NTA has gathered by clicking here.

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