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New report on testing and detection of zoonotic influenza virus infections in humans and occupational safety and health measures for those exposed at work


Zoonotic influenza viruses are viruses that can transmit from animals to humans, mainly avian and swine flu, and may cause epidemics or even pandemics, as in the past. Workers are likely to be at the front line of any outbreak where contact with animals cannot be avoided, such as in animal breeding centres, farms, zoos and slaughterhouses, laboratories, health and waste management facilities, or in wildlife conservation and forestry.

The joint report recently published by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) , and the European Reference Laboratory for Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease, aims to provide guidance on how to identify human infections with animal influenza viruses as early as possible to provide early warning and inform any measures. It explains the obligations that employers have to protect workers from infection or in the case of an outbreak.

Download and read the report

ECDC press release