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ICAO coordinating with World Health Organization on Zika response

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The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is continuing to coordinate on the air transport aspects of the global Zika virus response.

Under the lead World Health Organization (WHO), ICAO is undertaking close cooperation with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Airports Council International (ACI) and other UN and aviation agencies.

The management of the outbreak is currently focused on reducing the populations of the Aedes mosquito that transmit the virus at airports (vector control); strengthening surveillance of the mosquito population and the development of the disease amongst humans; and fast-tracking research to improve the understanding of the disease and its control – including potential links to microcephaly and neurological disorders.

Standard guidance material on the use of insecticides for aircraft (aircraft disinsection) is provided through the WHO’s Guide to Hygiene and Sanitation in Aviation and Aircraft Disinsection Insecticides guide, as well as its Guidelines for Testing the Efficacy of Insecticide Products Used in Aircraft. Additional guidance material specifically related to the Zika virus can be found  on the WHO website.

Aviation stakeholders will continue to share information and resources in order to assist with controlling the outbreak.

Improving preparedness and response to public health events form part of the Collaborative Arrangement for the Prevention and Management of Public Health Events in Civil Aviation (CAPSCA) programme. It was initiated by the WHO, ICAO and other UN and aviation agencies in 2010. The programme provides training and assistance to States and international airports for the planning and management of public health emergencies in the aviation sector.

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