The National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has identified the State-run Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases (RGICD) as a nodal centre for isolation and treatment of bird flu cases, if detected.

On Thursday, an NCDC team, which is in Bangalore to oversee the State Health Department’s surveillance measures in the vicinity of the Central Poultry Development Organisation (CPDO), visited RGICD along with the State Joint Director (Communicable Diseases) A.B. Chowdhury and other officials.

Dr. Chowdhury told The Hindu RGICD had been identified as the nodal centre for isolation and treatment of bird flu cases. “We will soon issue a notification in this regard,” he said.

RGICD Director Shashidhar Buggi, pointing out that no human case of bird flu had been detected so far, said the hospital was prepared to handle any emergency.

Culling over

Meanwhile, following the culling of all birds (more than 33,000, including turkeys, chickens, emus and an ostrich) at the CPDO, where the Union government has declared an outbreak of the highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1), the cleaning of the sheds and pens were in progress, a Department of Animal Husbandry communiqué said. Surveillance work in the 10-km radius of surveillance zone is on and 74 serum samples and 74 cloacal samples have been collected and submitted to the laboratory for investigations, the release said.

Lookout for birds

Arvind Jannu, Principal Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry, said authorities were now on the lookout for chicken owned by families within the 1-km radius of CPDO, which has been declared as the culling zone. “The blood and cloacal samples collected from birds outside the CPDO premises have tested negative for H5N1. The movement of poultry and poultry products, banned to and from the 10-km surveillance zone till November 15, will be reviewed if the situation demands,” Mr. Jannu said and added that the academic calendar of the school on the CPDO campus, now closed, will be rescheduled.

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