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Cablegate: Afghan Government Declares H1n1 State of Emergency

VZCZCXRO7157
OO RUEHDBU RUEHPW RUEHSL
DE RUEHBUL #3502 3071212
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 031212Z NOV 09
FM AMEMBASSY KABUL
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2710
RUCNAFG/AFGHANISTAN COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS KABUL 003502

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

DEPT FOR S/SRAP, SCA/FO, SCA/RA, SCA/A, M/MED

E.O. 12958 N/A
TAGS: SENV KFLU KSTH EAID PREL WHO AF
SUBJECT: AFGHAN GOVERNMENT DECLARES H1N1 STATE OF EMERGENCY

REF: STATE 111924

1. (SBU) Summary: Afghanistan's Second Vice President Mohammad
Karim Khalili declared a H1N1 state of emergency November 1 and
announced all schools and universities will close for three weeks to
prevent further spread of the disease. More than 20 new cases of
H1N1 have been reported in the last two weeks. The Afghan
Government has 51,000 doses of Tamiflu that have already been
distributed to health care providers and has asked the international
community for more. End summary.

2. (SBU) In a meeting with ministers and donors, Minister of Public
Health Sayed Fatemie said 321 total cases of H1N1 flu have been
reported in Afghanistan, including 271 cases among ISAF personnel,
who have recovered. (Note: while suspected cases among ISAF
personnel may be in this range, confirmed cases are substantially
lower.) A 35-year-old man died October 28, the first Afghan
fatality from H1N1. Three of his family members contracted the
disease, as well as three medical providers in the hospital where he
was treated. The surge in reported cases led the government to
declare a three-week state of emergency. In addition to school
closures, Fatemie said the government will ask Afghans to limit
large gatherings such as weddings and encourage people to stay home
if they are feeling sick. Afghan media were present at the meeting
and reported on the state of emergency. Media reports said there
are 551 cases of suspected H1N1 flu.

3. (SBU) The Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) has approximately
51,000 doses of Tamiflu that it has distributed to around 100 health
facilities in eight regions of the country. If there is a serious
H1N1 outbreak, MPH estimates it will need 270,000 doses to treat
patients. It has asked USAID and other donors for Tamiflu, the H1N1
vaccine, beds, blankets and hospital equipment to cope with the
outbreak. MOPH estimates it needs $125 million from donors to
address this epidemic, including $61 million to combat this first
outbreak. (Note: Afghanistan is eligible to receive U.S.-donated
H1N1 vaccines through the World Health Organization. USAID provided
MOPH 35,000 seasonal influenza vaccines for Hajj pilgrims starting
October 14, but media erroneously reported the vaccines were for
H1N1. End note.)

4. (SBU) Post is in close touch with MOPH, as well as maintaining
our close liaison with ISAF, and is evaluating ways to provide
assistance.

EIKENBERRY

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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