According to John Budd, head of communications with the United Nations Children's Fund in Jakarta, thousands of government workers and several members of socio- religious groups will be involved in a nationwide effort to stem avian flu outbreaks in poultry and in humans. This move will also be directed towards preparing the country in case of a pandemic outbreak.
The multimillion dollar campaign, sponsored by the Japanese government and supported by USAID, may enable Indonesia to gain control of the H5N1 strain of avian flu that has struck 33 provinces of the country in the past two years . Indonesia, with a population of 238 million people, attracted international attention after seven members of a family from the island of Sumatra were reported to be infected
According to the WHO, human cases provide an opportunity for H5N1 to mutate into a pandemic form that may wreck havoc kill millions of people,. Officials at the Geneva-based UN agency and elsewhere believe that the world is now closer to another influenza pandemic than anytime before.