Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Health Minister urged to impose anti-flu measures

Health Minister Sasa Zibe has been urged to get his department to take drastic measures to combat the swine flu that is sweeping the world.

Bulolo MP Sam Basil made the appeal yesterday as Australia’s swine flu tally had hit 306, while the number of cases around the world rose to 15,000.

He is particularly concerned because there are up to seven international flights from Australia each day, including those carrying fly-in fly-out workers to various project sites around the country, including Hidden Valley gold mine in his Bulolo electorate

Victoria is the Australian state worst-hit by swine flu with 212 sufferers, while NSW has 64 people with the disease, Queensland has 17 confirmed cases, while all other states and territories have six or fewer cases each.

“I’m particularly concerned because in Queensland, the number of cases is up to 17 now,” Mr Basil said, adding customs and health at Jackson’s Airport did not have proper facilities to screen visitors, which posed a serious threat to Papua New Guinea.

He also called on Mr Zibe and the Health Department to spell out clearly what vaccines were in place should the virus hit PNG.

“I’m very concerned,” Mr Basil said.

“What is the Health Minister doing about this?

“What is Papua New Guinea doing?

“Are we going to sit back like this?”


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