The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced on Saturday that amid the spreading of the H5N1 avian flu, a government-funded vaccine is now available for voluntary recipients who are at high risk of exposure to the influenza virus.
Starting on Friday, the CDC began to provide a vaccine against the H5N1 avian influenza and the service will continue until the end of August, the agency said.
The CDC recommended that people who work in the inspection and quarantine sectors, medical institutes and those who frequently visit countries with reported outbreaks of H5N1 bird flu should get vaccinated against the virus.
The H5N1 strain of bird flu was detected only in poultry at first, but has undergone genetic mutations in recent years which have resulted in human cases of the infection, the CDC said.
According to WHO statistics, 620 human cases of H5N1 infection have been reported and confirmed since 2003. Among them, 367 were fatal — a mortality rate of 59 percent.
The CDC said that smuggled birds carrying the virus were found at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport last year.
Those who work in virus-screening laboratories, inspection and quarantine sectors, the poultry industry, ports of entry and those who plan to travel to the endemic regions, with the exception of pregnant women, are advised by the CDC to receive the vaccine, provided they are more than 18 years of age.
President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) administration is seeking to join an Indo-Pacific economic framework being planned by the US, a senior official said. The government is paying close attention to the regional economic pact being touted by US President Joe Biden, although too few details have emerged from Washington for Taipei to make specific plans, the official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity. The US is expected to launch the Indo-Pacific economic framework next month after negotiations with Australia, India and Japan, the official said. The economic initiative is to tackle trade facilitation, standards for the digital economy and technology, supply-chain resiliency and
PIVOTAL ROLE: Taiwan’s importance in the global chip supply chain can be bolstered by domestic equipment manufacturing, President Tsai Ing-wen said Efforts must be made to better secure Taiwan’s place in the global supply chain by localizing production of equipment and facilities used by the semiconductor industry, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said yesterday. Tsai discussed the issue during a meeting with representatives from the Taiwan Electronic Equipment Industry Association at the Presidential Office in Taipei. Product shortages throughout the COVID-19 pandemic — particularly of automotive chips — highlighted the pivotal role of Taiwan in the global supply chain, she said. Tsai thanked the association for cooperating with the government on the shared goal of localizing production of important semiconductor industry equipment.
SEPARATE CASE? A woman tested positive when she went with her daughter to be tested, because her daughter had taken the same bus to school as a steakhouse worker The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported 10 local COVID-19 cases, six of whom had visited a steakhouse in Taoyuan where an infection cluster has been reported. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that of the 10 local infections, one case — No. 17,928 — is a Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport disease prevention staffer who works in the area where inbound travelers collect their saliva for a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, and sometimes at the fever screening station. The staffer had tested negative in a PCR test on Jan. 9 and
TRACING UNDER WAY: The CECC has identified six transmission chains among 25 recently confirmed COVID-19 cases, including those linked to a restaurant and a bank The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported 54 new COVID-19 infections — 44 imported and 10 local — and identified six transmission chains among local cases. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said the imported cases are 18 who tested positive upon arrival at the airport and 26 who tested positive during quarantine. Of the local cases, seven are associated with a cluster infection at a Tasty Steak (西堤牛排) outlet in Taoyuan’s Zhongli District (中壢), one is linked to a family of four with COVID-19 reported on Monday, one is a family member of an