November 4, 2005


Hong Kong offers to vaccinate backyard poultry for free



Hong Kong has launched a bird flu vaccination programme for backyard poultry on Nov 3.


Started by the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department of Hong Kong, the vaccination programme is aimed to reduce public health risks from a HPAI outbreak among local backyard poultry.


A department spokesman said that two injections-each four to six weeks apart-will be applied to poultry, afterwhich vaccinated poultry will be secured with ID leg bands.


There will be departmental guidelines that cover vaccine dosage and storage, and disposal of medical waste. The department staff will also visit and distribute pamphlets to households on backyard poultry's bio-security measures, such as the use of bird nets, disinfection arrangements and segregation of poultry.


However, households who cannot provide adequate bio-security measures should consider giving up backyard farming, the spokesman added.