Fri, Jul 29, 2005 - Page 2 News List

Officials waiting for funds for plan to combat the flu

CNA , TAIPEI

A Department of Health official said yesterday that financing a NT$30 billion (US$952.38 million)four-year plan to combat influenza will not be an easy task and that when the plan can get started will depend on when it is approved by the Legislative Yuan.

The Center for Disease Control official said the department has a plan mapped out for a long time on the issue and estimated that it will require nearly NT$30 billion. Of this figure, NT$18 billion will be allocated as a special budget for emergency treatment and disease control when a massive human-to-human transmission outbreak is reported.

In addition, NT$4.4 billion will be used to store flu medication and NT$6 billion will be used for research and development of flu vaccines, both of which will require long-term planning.

However, as the production of vaccine is in the purview of the biochemical industry, the department will first have to invest in the sector, the official said.

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