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Cablegate: Pandemic Influenza: Cairo Preparations for Possible

VZCZCXYZ0001
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHEG #6821 3131527
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 091527Z NOV 06
FM AMEMBASSY CAIRO
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 2540

UNCLAS CAIRO 006821

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR NEA/ELA, OES/WINN, A/GSSI FOR PACKER, CA/OCS FOR KRICHTER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AMGT AMED TBIO ASEC CASC KFLU KSAF KSEO
SUBJECT: PANDEMIC INFLUENZA: CAIRO PREPARATIONS FOR POSSIBLE
SHELTER-IN-PLACE

REF: STATE 177681

1. (U) Since the outbreak of Avian Influenza in Egypt and
neighboring countries in 2005, post has actively urged both mission
members and the wider AMCIT community to prepare for pandemic
influenza. In order to alert the community on the basics of AI and
pandemic influenza preparation, the Embassy health unit published
"shelter-in-place" instructions in our weekly circular, conducted
numerous town hall meetings within and outside of the mission
community, and spoke at two regional conferences for international
schools. The health unit routinely reminds mission members to keep
a 12-week supply of food and water in their homes. In keeping with
worldwide guidelines, DOS supplied post with enough Tamiflu to
provide treatment for 35% of American and LES employees and American
family members.

2. (U) The Consular section, in addition to disseminating several
warden messages to the community, also posted the State Department
fact sheet on AI on the ACS website with links to relevant DOS, CDC,
and other USG websites. Since Egypt has the second highest number
of human cases in the world this year, the Consular section is
prepared to rapidly inform the AMCIT community of any changes in the
disease, such as sustained human to human transmission, through
email, text messages, and a telephone hotline. Post is distributing
a DOS produced video on preparing for pandemic influenza both within
and outside of the mission community.

3. (U) Water supply: Embassy Cairo, one of the largest missions in
the world, recognizes and takes seriously the potential water
shortage situation that could occur in the event of pandemic
influenza. Due to the size of the mission, we estimate a 12-week
water supply to be roughly 126,000 gallons. Therefore, post
constantly reminds mission members to maintain individual supplies
of water in their homes. Additionally, the Embassy commissary
maintains a supply of 100 cases of local water, and 100 cases of
imported water. In preparation for Y2K, post purchased several
back-up water tanks. The commissary has 425 liters of bleach in
supply, for potential use in water purification while the Embassy
chancery has an additional 75 liters.

4. (U) Avian Influenza Working Group: Post's AIWG meets on a
regular basis both internally and with Egyptian authorities. The
AIWG has established a series of tripwires, outlining appropriate
steps for the EAC, CONS, MED, and RSO. The wealth of USG agencies
in Cairo, including FAS, NAMRU, USAID, and many State offices, is a
great asset to post's AI and pandemic influenza preparation.

RICCIARDONE

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