BANGKOK, Jan. 20 (Xinhuanet) -- Thailand has pledged a total of 100 million baht (2.5 million U.S. dollars) to an international fund on fighting bird flu worldwide, a Public Health officials said here Friday.
Deputy Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul, after attending the International Pledging Conference on Avian and Human Pandemic Influenza in Beijing, said the financial aid Thailand pledged is particularly for the other members of the Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy (ACMECS), namely Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, in their efforts to strike bird flu epidemic.
The 75 billion-baht (1.9 billion U.S. dollars) fund pledged at donor countries meeting in China will be largely spent on health and veterinary services aimed to monitor and prevent the H5N1 virus from mutating and spreading from human to human.
Thailand has been chosen as training center for health officials from Southeast Asian countries in dealing with the disease that has caused scores of deaths in the region, Dr. Thawat Suntrajarn, Director-General of Department of Disease Control, was quoted by Thai News Agency as saying.
The Disease Control Department, with coordination from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United States Center for Disease Control (CDC), has designed a week-long training course for 30 trainees from 14 Asian countries, said Thawat.
From 2003 to Jan. 19, 2006, avian flu has infected a total of 149 people worldwide and claimed 80 lives in six countries, including Vietnam (42), Thailand (14), Indonesia (12), Cambodia (4), China (6) and Turkey (2).
The latest human-infected bird flu case in Thailand was reported on Dec. 7 last year. Enditem