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At the National Directorate of Sernapesca in Valparaíso, Health and SAG authorities met to reinforce intersectoral work coordination in the framework of the affectation of a marine mammal with avian influenza.

Chile map/CIA

After the first detection of a sea lion positive for avian influenza, the director of the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service, Soledad Tapia, together with the director(s) of the Agricultural and Livestock Service, Andrea Collao, and the Undersecretary(s) of Health Pública del Minsal, Fernando González, reinforced this morning the call for citizens to collaborate in the campaign to prevent the spread of this virus, urging that when sighting sick or dead birds or marine animals not touch or move them and contact them immediately with SAG or Sernapesca.

“We reviewed the response protocols in the face of the animal health epidemiological situation of this situation that has been advancing in the world. Chile has kept active its responses and efficient investigations to identify avian influenza. It is about preventive coordination to prevent this contagion in animals from continuing to advance on the Chilean coast, and in this sense, health work is intensified to have an epidemiological response when required,” said Fernando González, Undersecretary (s) of Public Health of the Minsal .

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H5N1 avian influenza is a fast-spreading viral disease that primarily affects birds and has no treatment. Despite the fact that it is predominantly widespread in wild birds, there is currently already one case of interspecies contagion in our country. It is a sea lion, which tested positive in Antofagasta last week, indicated the National Director of Sernapesca Soledad Tapia. “It is important to point out that we have only one confirmed positive case for avian influenza, and we have reinforced our joint work with SAG, to continue sampling cases with symptoms associated with avian influenza. The most important thing for citizens is to keep their distance from marine animals stranded alive or dead,” Tapia said.

To date, there have been positive cases of avian influenza in wild birds between the regions of Arica and Parinacota to Los Lagos, with the exception of the Metropolitan region, Los Ríos and La Araucanía, which have not registered positive cases.

The national director(s) of the SAG, Andrea Collao, pointed out that “this variant of the disease is present in 11 regions of our country and in 25 types of affected bird species. Together, as public bodies, we redirect the avian influenza campaign because we need citizens to collaborate, first by keeping their distance for their protection, and then by reporting cases of sightings of stranded animals because that allows us to focus on inspections.”

The services have already activated the joint action plan to prevent the spread of the virus that generates Avian Influenza. The institutions have professionals in all regions and have prepared both joint and autonomous action protocols, as well as training for sample collection, the correct use of personal protection elements, and the availability of help desks to receive complaints. 24 hours

To reduce its progress, it is essential that, in the event of being in front of a bird or other species that shows signs of being sick with avian influenza or is dead, do not touch it, do not move, do not move and immediately report to the SAG at 223451100 or Sernapesca at 800 320 032 in case of being a sea lion or penguin.