07MOSCOW1677, RUSSIAN OUTBREAK COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES IN COUNTRY AVIAN

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07MOSCOW1677 2007-04-13 03:22 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO3507
PP RUEHAG RUEHAST RUEHDA RUEHDBU RUEHDF RUEHFL RUEHIK RUEHKW RUEHLA
RUEHLN RUEHLZ RUEHPOD RUEHROV RUEHSR RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHMO #1677/01 1030322
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 130322Z APR 07
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9203
RUEHRC/USDA FAS WASHDC 4723
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEHTA/AMEMBASSY ASTANA 0093
RUEHBK/AMEMBASSY BANGKOK 0777
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 4219
RUEHHI/AMEMBASSY HANOI 1510
RUEHPF/AMEMBASSY PHNOM PENH 0394
RUEHUM/AMEMBASSY ULAANBAATAR 0265
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RUEHPH/CDC ATLANTA GA
RUEAUSA/DEPT OF HHS WASHDC
RHEFAFM/DIRAFMIC FT DETRICK MD//MA-1//
RHMFIUU/DTRA ALEX WASHINGTON DC//CT//
RHEFSNG/HMSNG WASHINGTON DC
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 001677 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE FOR G/AIG 
STATE ALSO FOR EUR/RUS, EB/TPP/ATP, EB/TPP/BTA, OES/STC 
USDA FOR OSEC/DAN CAINE, FAS FOR OSTA/MACKE, 
-  WRIGHT, LEIER, ROSENBLUM; OCRA/THOMAS, 
-  FLEMINGS; OA/PATRICK CLERKIN 
HHS FOR SAWYER, STEIGER 
FAS PASS FSIS AND APHIS 
SECDEF FOR OSD 
VIENNA PASS APHIS/TANAKA, BRUSSELS PASS 
- APHIS/FERNANDEZ 
USDOC 3150/DAVID FULTON/MOLLY COSTA/ITA/CS/OIO/EUR 
GENEVA PASS HEALTH ATTACHE 
DEPARTMENT PASS USAID FOR GH/RCS/EE/ROSENBERG 
CDC ATLANTA PASS SEPRL FOR DAVID SUAREZ 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: TBIO KFLU KSTH KPAO SENV RS
SUBJECT: RUSSIAN OUTBREAK COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES IN COUNTRY AVIAN 
INFLUENZA PLAN 
 
REFS:  A. STATE 46669 
 
   B. MOSCOW 1318 
        C. 06 MOSCOW 8690 
        D. MOSCOW 778 
        E. MOSCOW 711 
        F. MOSCOW 776 
        G. MOSCOW 713 
        H. MOSOCW 710 
        I. MOSCOW 709 
        J. 05 MOSCOW 13418 
 
SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED.  PLEASE PROTECT ACCORDINGLY. 
 
1. (SBU) SUMMARY:  Per Ref A request, Russia has not yet adopted a 
communications strategy for avian and pandemic influenza that 
complies with WHO best practices for outbreak communication to the 
public.  END SUMMARY. 
 
2. (SBU) Russia has yet to adopt a comprehensive Avian Influenza 
(AI) and Pandemic Preparedness Plan (Ref B) which links regional 
plans to an overall federal plan.  The GOR also has not yet adopted 
a systematic outbreak communication strategy.  Communications with 
the media and public do not at present comply with the WHO 
guidelines on best practices for outbreak communications in terms of 
advanced planning and coordination. Ad hoc public outreach measures 
have included press coverage reporting on the AI situation, the 
migration patterns of wild birds, and Russia's success in producing 
a human vaccine.  AI posters were distributed to health authorities 
and appear in some health centers.  The Russian Red Cross in Siberia 
has trained its volunteers in AI prevention measures.  It is seeking 
funding to expand this program.  UNICEF is launching an information 
campaign to protect children in Dagestan. 
 
3. (SBU) A draft AI national preparedness plan has been submitted to 
WHO for review, but needs further refinement and better linkage and 
coordination of oblast (regional) plans with a national plan (Ref 
B).  The draft contains a brief section on communications with the 
public and media.  That section notes the role of mass media in 
accurately informing the public about pandemics both country-wide 
and in affected regions.  The media should also play a role in 
educating the public about clinical symptoms and individual 
protective measures to help avoid infection.  Hotlines on treatment 
and prevention measures should be established in the event of a 
pandemic.  The draft section also discusses in general terms the 
development of information outreach and education programs.  An 
action plan adopted in 2006 (Ref C) did not mention the issue of 
communicating with the public and does not allocate any funding to 
such an effort. 
 
4. (SBU) During some recent AI outbreaks among birds, government 
statements to the media sometimes appear to have been ad hoc and 
were not always coordinated among officials representing different 
federal ministries and agencies, and among regional officials (Refs 
D-I).  In some cases, federal health officials have announced an AI 
outbreak before lab results confirmed the presence of AI (Ref I). 
Oblast officials and certain elected federal officials have 
periodically made irresponsible statements on the origin of 
 
MOSCOW 00001677  002 OF 002 
 
 
outbreaks and sought to link them to selfish actions by foreign 
governments (Ref J, among others). 
 
5. (SBU) The public is generally informed within 24-48 hours after a 
suspected outbreak by government officials from the Ministries of 
Agriculture or Emergency Situations, or from the Federal 
Surveillance Service for Consumer Rights and Human Well-Being 
(Rospotrebnadzor), which is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry 
of Health and Social Development.  The Ministries of Agriculture and 
of Emergency Situations have also made recent statements to the 
public warning of the possib
ility of future AI outbreaks. 
 
BURNS

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