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Combatting avian influenza in Viet Nam, the 8-year-long collaboration in a book

18/05/2016

In 2004, Viet Nam poultry and human were heavily impacted by the highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 outbreaks, causing more than 60 human deaths and $45 million dollars of economic loss from dead poultries at its peak moment. In order to respond to this emergency, FAO’s Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) program joined the FAO Viet Nam country office in 2006. With the financial support from various organizations such as the United States Agency of International Development (USAID), Japanese Trust Funds, the European Commission, World Bank and UN joint funds, FAO ECTAD Viet Nam partnered with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to detect, prevent and control this deadly disease.

After 8 years of technical assistance, an outstanding improvement in laboratory, surveillance and diagnosis capacity, policy formulation, biosecurity, and awareness have been recognized and appreciated. FAO Viet Nam’s Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) and the Department of Animal Health within MARD have recently co-published the ‘Legacy Document: 8 years of immediate technical assistance activities strengthening emergency preparedness for HPAI in Viet Nam’ to celebrate the successful collaboration between.

The legacy document is consisted of seven chapters each featuring activities that FAO ECTAD has supported the Government of Viet Nam including;

  • Coordination and Management
  • Surveillance
  • Laboratory and Diagnostic Capacity
  • Vaccination
  • Biosecurity
  • Socio-economics and HPAI control in Viet Nam
  • Communication and Advocacy

The success stories and lessons learned from the 8-year-long project were shared with the animal and human health experts and development partners to present the national and international efforts of keeping Viet Nam safe from avian influenza.

After surviving the crisis surrounding the emergence of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1), the need for a fundamentally sustainable approach to fight against not only avian influenza, but also other livestock and zoonotic transboundary diseases has emerged. Building upon the long history of collaboration and lessons learned, FAO ECTAD Viet Nam has now transitioned to address broader animal health, animal production, and food safety areas guided by the current Viet Nam government priorities. Most recently, FAO is supporting One Health which aims to address human, animal and ecological health in a collaborative cross-sectoral and transdisciplinary manner. Through this approach, ECTAD Viet Nam is contributing to Increasing the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises, ensuring the sustainability of the animal health and production interventions, and helping eliminate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition.

Link to Legacy Document (English / Vietnamese)

To request hardcopy of the legacy document, please contact: kijung.min@fao.org