Materia Medica Malaysiana

March 3, 2007

Malaysia To Continue Culling Poultry To Contain Bird Flu

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 12:58 pm

KUALA LUMPUR, March 2 (Bernama) — Malaysia will continue to cull birds or poultry suspected of being infected with bird flu as the method has proven to be effective in containing the outbreak of the deadly virus in the country.
Dr Kamarudin Mohamed Isa, Head of the Disease Control and Veterinary Biologics Unit, Veterinary Services Department, said today that culling or “stamping out” infected birds had been proven effective in 2004 and 2006.
However, he did not dismiss the possibility of Malaysia resorting to vaccine if the situation warrants it, adding that the ministry was evaluating certain vaccines for that purpose.
He told reporters this after the four-day Second Asean Workshop on Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) Control and Eradication, which ended today.
At the moment, two Asean countries — Indonesia and Vietnam — had been using vaccine to contain the deadly virus due to the large population of poultry which would cost more to compensate farmers, he said.
“There are 300 million ayam kampung (range chicken) in Indonesia and 70 million ducks to be culled if they choose the stamping out approach,” said Dr Kamarudin.
The workshop, attended by 69 participants from all the Asean member countries and other international organisations, recommended among others, that countries that produce their own vaccines. like Indonesia and Vietnam, follow the international standard in their manufacturing process.
The workshop also stressed that if there was inadequate vaccine, certain species of bird like fighting cocks and birds in mixed farming like those in integrated poultry farm comprising chicken, ducks and quails should be given priority, he said.
The participants also said that there was a need for a database on the production of bird flu vaccine that could be shared among the Asean countries.
Dr Kamarudin said the participants suggested that if the government opted to cull the birds to contain the disease, the government should not be burdened to pay the compensation to the farmers.
“They could compensate farmers by providing them with chicks or eggs, financial aid in soft loans to assist them to start all over again,” he said.
In 2006 Malaysia spent about RM300,000 in compensation to farmers, an average of RM9.50 for a chicken, Dr Kamarudin added.

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