Avian Influenza Science, Policy and Politics
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Over the past decade, substantial resources have been spent on tackling avian influenza and building a global capacity for a pandemic response. The catastrophic costs of the 1918 influenza pandemic are well documented, and the swine flu pandemic of 2009-10 has raised the alarm yet again. Across the world, surveillance systems have been upgraded, stockpiles of antiviral drugs and influenza vaccines have been created, veterinary and public health systems have been improved and poultry production and marketing has been dramatically restructured. What are the lessons from this experience? And what does this suggest for the future? This book explores how virus genetics, ecology and epidemiology intersect with economic, political and policy processes in a variety of places - from Bangkok to Washington, to Jakarta, Cairo, Rome and London. It focuses on the interaction of the international and national responses - and in particular the experiences of Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand. It asks how effective is the disease surveillance and response system - can it respond to a new pandemic threat? The comparative analysis reveals the challenges and limitations of a technocratic, centralised response, and the need to take seriously local contexts. Drawing from these experiences, the book concludes with a discussion of future prospects and challenges, examining in particular what a 'One World, One Health' approach - where approaches to animal, human and ecosystem health are integrated - would look like in practice. Published in association with the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).
'Preparing for pandemics is a major challenge for our global public health security. Based on a detailed examination of the experience of the international avian influenza response, this book provides important new directions and options for the way forward. It should be read by all those across the world who are concerned with public health and its underpinning policies.' – David L. Heymann, Head, Global Health Security, Chatham House, London, formerly Assistant Director General, World Health Organization, Geneva
'This provocative and stimulating book gives an overview and innovative analysis of a disease of global and local importance. It explores the tensions between international agencies' and government thinking on disease control, and the strategies of local level producers in developing and middle income countries, constrained by poverty and limited technology. This collection of case studies and the original synthesis into which they are woven will be of immediate interest for policymakers, scientists and students of emerging diseases.' – Katherine Homewood, Professor of Anthropology, University College London.
'Thoroughly researched and engagingly written, this book is an important contribution to our collective understanding about livestock disease emergencies. Drawing on the stories of those most involved in the emergency response to highly pathogenic avian influenza, it reminds us of the importance of fitting emergency actions to the local institutional context and the difficulty of doing so under pressure and with limited information.' – Anni McLeod, Senior Officer (Livestock Policy), UN Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome
'SARS, H5N1 avian influenza and then influenza A(H1N1) are not one-off events, but are indicative of the continuous and persistent threat of emerging and re-emerging zooonotic diseases. Rigorous analysis about what we have learnt from the H5N1 response, as well as vigorous debate and rapid consensus building about how to become better prepared in the future is urgently required. We see this publication as an important response to that need.' – Jimmy W. Smith, Team Leader - Livestock, World Bank, Washington DC
'Avian influenza has repeatedly made the headlines since its re-emergence in Asia in 2004. However, the research agenda, dominated by biological aspects of disease control, has largely neglected the human and institutional aspects of the response to a novel threat surrounded by an extremely high degree of uncertainty. This book systematically addresses this important gap, offering insights into what shaped the responses at local, national and international levels. The book provides a comprehensive overview of the various political and economic forces that have driven the responses to avian influenza by combining a detailed analysis of the international setting with carefully selected country case studies. The result is a ten-point agenda for changing the way the global health community addresses the increased risk of emerging diseases. These suggested changes will not be popular, but are necessary if the aim is a safer world for all.' – Joachim Otte, Animal Production and Health Division, UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, Rome
'This is an important new work, which provides for the first time a deep and wide-ranging analysis of the political economy of the international response to a disease epidemic of global significance.' – Peter Bazeley, Livestock in Development, Beaminster, UK
'Complexity in human-environmental systems poses two fundamental challenges for scholars. The first is the need to move beyond buzzwords and abstract theory, through solid, empirical studies. The second is to communicate these insights in a way that is both precise and useful to a wider audience. This book has been able to achieve both in a form that will inspire sustainability science and health scholars for a long time to come.' – Victor Galaz, Research Theme Leader, Stockholm Resilience Centre, Stockholm University
'Dealing with a new disease such as highly pathogenic avian influenza creates multiple challenges. This book provides a framework for analysing the political economy of animal health policymaking at national and international levels. The book adds to the debate of how to manage disease outbreaks and what lessons need to be taken forward in the search for a new paradigm of 'One World One Health'. A key message has to be that animal disease surveillance, prevention and control measures involve and have an impact on people - and so understanding people's needs is critical to disease control success.' – Jonathan Rushton, Senior Lecturer in Animal Health Economics, Veterinary Epidemiology and Public Health Group, Royal Veterinary College, Hatfield
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