The last bird flu epidemic had the world flying scared and put the brakes on global travel. Airports and airlines are on the front lines of any outbreak and need to remain incredibly vigilant in order to prevent the flu from spreading further.
A conference of executives from aviation regulatory agencies, airports and airlines in the Asia-Pacific region is scheduled to open in Manila on Monday with discussions on collaboration in medical emergency situations such as the avian flu on top of its agenda.
The 6th International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Collaborative Arrangement for the Prevention and Management of Public Health Events in Civil Aviation (Capsca) Asia Pacific coordination meeting will begin Monday at the Diamond Hotel along Roxas Boulevard in Manila.
Hosted by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), the four-day meeting will cover highlights of Capsca project activities in the other Icao regions; recent developments and implementation of International Health Regulations crafted by the World Health Organisation in 2005; business continuity planning for airports and air carriers and other state experiences in preparedness planning and response; and updates on the Novel Corona Influenza A (H7N9) virus.
The H7N9 avian flu outbreak in China has both international health and travel authorities worried. Around 100 people have gotten sick with H7N9, 18 of whom have died. Delegations from Brunei, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Nepal and Thailand will be joined by WHO, Icao, Montreal-based Airport Council International, Asia-Europe Foundation and Association of Asia Pacific Airlines representatives.
CAAP Director General William Hotchkisss III will lead the opening ceremony, while Dr. Anthony Evans, chief of Icao’s aviation medicine section and Capsca global project manager, will preside over the programme.
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