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Are you worried about the swine flu reaching the UAE?

Are you worried about the swine flu reaching the UAE?

The results are in.

May 3, 2009 11:32 by

The GCC health ministers held an emergency meeting regarding the outbreak of swine flu on Saturday in Doha, and have decided to set up a unified plan to prevent the outbreak of the virus in the region. Although no cases of the virus have been reported in all six of the GCC states, the region’s governments have started scanning travelers passing through the airports.

“We should not exaggerate the matter more than it merits,” GCC Secretary-General Abdul Rahman Al Attiyah said on Saturday.

But according to our poll, many people seem to be worried about the situation. The majority of our respondents, close to 61 percent, said that no one is safe. Alternatively, 17 percent are confident that the virus will be contained before it reaches the region, and 8 percent feel that UAE is ready for anything.

The UAE has introduced several precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the virus; thermal cameras have been installed at the Dubai International Airport, the UAE government has formed two emergency committees to discuss precautionary measures, and has also stocked one million capsules of Tamiflu, enough for about 40,000 people if there is an outbreak of swine flu.

Late last week, the government also banned all imports of pork meat and derivatives. However, the UN and the World Trade Organization have said that there is no justification for anti-pork trade measures because there is no evidence that the virus spreads by food.

The World Health Organization also released a statement last week confirming that they will no longer be referring to the virus as swine flu, and that they will be calling it influenza A (H1N1).

Maybe that’s why 13 percent of our respondents asked, “Did you say swine?”

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