Vietnam will form anti-bird flu task forces at both central and local levels to stamp out any disease outbreaks timely and comprehensively, according to local newspaper People's Army on Thursday.
Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Bui Ba Bong was quoted by the newspaper as saying that when detecting a bird flu outbreak, the future task forces will mobilize all sources to isolate the affected area and contain the disease which can return to Vietnam in the coming time amid current outbreaks in some regional countries.
Vietnam is planning to establish hotlines at both central and local levels to quickly receive any bird flu-related information, and offer 500,000 Vietnamese dong (31.4 U.S. dollars) to those who report outbreaks, the newspaper said.
The Vietnamese government has recently instructed state agencies and localities nationwide to beef up management and inspection of transport, slaughtering, trade and import of fowls and related products, including placing a temporary ban on import of live poultry and related products from countries hit by bird flu, combating poultry smuggling more fiercely, enforcing the existing ban on raising poultry in inner areas of major cities and hatching waterfowls nationwide, and continuing bird flu vaccination.
Vietnam, which has recently completed this year's first batch of bird flu vaccination among fowls nationwide, plans to finish the second batch by late November.
The country has so far this year vaccinated some 134 million poultry. Testing 14,161 specimens from vaccinated chickens and ducks indicated that more than 75 percent of the fowls have developed capacity of not contracting bird flu virus strain H5, according to the Department of Animal Health under the Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Bird flu outbreaks, starting in the country in December 2003, have killed and led to the forced culling of dozens of millions of fowls. The last outbreak of bird flu among poultry in Vietnam was in December 2005, said the department.