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Monday, May 18, 2009

Thai delegation attend Geneva meeting

The Nation: National

Thai delegation attend Geneva meeting -
The 62nd session of the WHO's World Health Assembly, beginning today and running for five days, will also discuss the sharing of influenza virus specimens, an essential ingredient in the development of vaccines. It will also consider the thorny issue of access to any vaccines that are developed.

Thai Public Health Minister Witthaya Kaewparadai said other topics to be covered at the assembly were the impact of the economic crisis on global health, the implementation of International Health Regulations, primary healthcare - including the strengthening of health systems, social determinants of health, the monitoring of healthrelated achievements listed in the Millennium Development Goals, the spread of counterfeit medicines and drug resistance.

As the head of Thailand's delegation to the world assembly, he said Thailand would introduce a decision made by Asean health ministers, and their dialogue partners from China, Japan and South Korea, agreeing to boost regional stockpiles of antiviral medicines.

The Thai Public Health Ministry will also present its achievements in the development of national healthcare security.

Moreover, Witthaya will lead senior health officers in a discussion concerning preventive measures among youth groups in the fight against HIV/AIDS infection with officials of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS.

Yesterday, the World Health Organisation said 8480 cases of influenza A (H1N1) infection had been reported in 39 countries around the world, including 72 deaths in Mexico, the United States, Canada and Costa Rica.

Thailand recently confirmed the first two cases of influenza A (H1N1) infection in this country. The Public Health Ministry has had no reports of any further cases. Laboratory tests have shown that two suspected cases in Kanchanaburi province and a nineyearold boy in Chiang Mai province were not infected with influenza A (H1N1), but were suffering from seasonal flu.

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