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Information about Avian Influenza for Travellers

The H5N1 Avian Influenza virus has been confirmed in several Asian and European countries. An up-to-date list of the countries affected can be found at

http://www.oie.int/downld/AVIAN_INFLUENZA/A_AI-Asia.htm

The evidence available is that the confirmed human cases of avian influenza had very close contact with infected birds.

As a precaution against the risk of contracting the disease when travelling in any affected country

  • you should avoid any contact with live poultry and wild birds;
  • do not visit live animal or bird markets or poultry farms or other places that may be contaminated by bird faeces;
  • don't eat or handle undercooked or raw poultry, egg or duck dishes;
  • wash your hands regularly with soap and water; and
  • don't attempt to bring any live poultry and other birds, or poultry products back to Ireland.

On returning from any affected country

If you have had any contact with poultry or other birds or have visited a live bird market, farm or any other place that may be contaminated by bird faeces:

Do not have any contact with live poultry or any other birds in Ireland for at least 7 days and you should

  • Dry clean any clothes that may have had any contact with poultry or any other birds or their faeces
  • Clean and disinfect any footwear that was worn at any live bird market, on a farm or at any other place that may have been contaminated by bird faeces

Imports

The EU Commission has introduced a series of safeguard measures which include a ban on the importation into the EU of live poultry birds, most poultry products and untreated feathers.

Travellers must not bring into the country any meat products, particularly poultry products, in personal luggage (unless it is a proprietary brand infant food or special food for medical reasons which does not require refrigeration and is in unbroken packaging).