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  1. 1
    047644

    Business travel in Asia: blood tests required?

    Karel S

    CONSUMER MARKETS ABROAD. 1988 Mar; 7(3):1, 13.

    Travellers to Asian countries face growing hostility as potential carriers of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Visitors who plan to stay in China, India, the Philippines, or South Korea for more than 1 year must prove that they are AIDS-free. In addition, all foreign students who enter China and India must carry documents indicating that they tested negative for the AIDS virus. The upcoming Olympics poses a special health problem for South Korea, which has not so far required AIDS testing for short-term visitors. A World Health Organization consultation on AIDS infection and international travel has raised questions about the feasibility of an AIDS screening program. The estimated direct cost per traveller for AIDS testing would be US$10-20. Even if all foreign travellers were to be screened, 2 problems could still allow AIDS to enter these countries: black marketing of false health certificates and failing to test foreign nationals who have been abroad. Moreover, a restrictive screening policy for international travellers could result in a decline in tourism and international commerce. Business people who intend to travel to Asia for extended periods of time are advised to check with embassies before their departure to find out what AIDS-related clearances may be required.
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  2. 2
    039522
    Peer Reviewed

    [Record of the second meeting of the WHO Collaborating Centers on AIDS] Deuxieme reunion des centres collaborateurs de l'OMS pour le SIDA: memorandum d'une reunion de l'OMS.

    BULLETIN OF THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION. 1986; 64(2):221-31.

    Participants at the 2nd meeting of World Health Organization (WHO) collaborating centers on AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome) held in Geneva in December 1985 reported on progress since the 1st meeting in September 1985 and made a number of recommendations for future action in the areas of information, education, and prevention; reference reactants and tests of anti-HTLV-III antibodies; epidemiologic evaluation; and research on vaccines and antiviral agents. It was recommended that ministries of health, education, and social services provide the public with timely and accurate information on AIDS, that physicians, nurses, and similar personnel inform the ill and the public about AIDS and its prevention, and that school age children and young people be informed about AIDS and how to avoid infection. Systems of registration of AIDS cases should be implemented in order to provide the WHO and member states with data on the international level. Standardization and availability of serologic tests is also required. Instructions for avoiding infection should be provided for health personnel and others caring for AIDS patients, for individuals providing personal services to the public, and to ensure adequate methods of disinfection. Instructions for preventing AIDS should discuss sexual and parenteral transmission as well as perinatal transmission. Specific recommendations for education and family placement for children with AIDS have already been published. Instructions should be provided for prisons and similar estabilshments. Requiring international travellers to provide certificates attesting to their AIDS-free status is not justified as a preventive measure. The significant existing demand for reference reactants including human serums with anit-HTLV-III antibodies and controls is being addressed by several institutes in different countries, but it would be premature to furnish reference reactants other than serums. The WHO collaborating centers should furnish materials for purposes of training in diagnostic techniques. Existing tests for diagnosis and confirmation should be imporved and new tests should be developed, with particular attention to simple methods appropriate for use in developing countries. It will be necessary to establish international biological standards for the HTLV-III virus, but the required specifications are not yet known. Technical cooperation and epidemiological evaluation must be planned separately, based on the different prevalence of infections and technical expertise of different countries. A clinical definition of AIDS is needed for countries lacking resources needed to apply the Centers for Disease Control/WHO definition. Surveillance methods and laboratories can be installed with WHO assistance, to help evaluate the extent of AIDS infection in different countries. Later technical cooperation in the areas of continued surveillance and laboratory capacities will depend on results of the initial evaluation in each country. Research is currently underway in several countries of possible vaccines and drugs. Careful preclinical studies should be done to evaluate the toxicity of an agent before clinical studies are conducted. Convenient animal models should be sought for future research. 3 annexes to this report specify methods of disinfection; general principles of preventing transmission of the AIDS virus through parenteral exposure or following donation of organs, sperm, or other tissue; and a proposed definition of clinical cases of AIDS.
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