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The Political Economy of HPAI in Thailand Rachel M. Safman, Ph.D.
Key Characteristics <ul><li>Thailand in recovery from Asian Economy crisis at time HPAI hit </li></ul><ul><li>Thai politic...
Overview of the Crisis <ul><li>~33 million birds destroyed (2,000 flocks infected)  </li></ul><ul><li>$130 M (USD) in loss...
Chronology of HPAI in Thailand I II III IV
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>1 st  appearance of disease – Nov ’03 </li></ul><ul><li>Government initially denied HPAI’...
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Response to 1 st  wave adhered closely to international guidelines </li></ul><ul><li>5 km...
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Virus waned May ’04, re-appeared in July ’04 </li></ul><ul><li>Attempt to deny re-emergen...
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>X-ray surveillance introduced Oct 04 </li></ul><ul><li>Nationwide active case-finding bas...
Surveillance Rapid Response System
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>3 rd  “wave” appeared June ’05, following long disease-free hiatus </li></ul><ul><li>2 da...
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Data collected via ongoing X-ray surveillance allowed for more targeted intervention </li...
National Strategic Plan <ul><li>Enhanced bio-security at production points </li></ul><ul><li>Ongoing disease monitoring w/...
Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Since 2006 TH has experienced semi-annual outbreaks of low intensity, typically v.localiz...
Major Policy Positions <ul><li>Preventative culling of all susceptible animals within 1-10 km radius of cases </li></ul><u...
Key Stakeholder Groups <ul><li>Industrial producers </li></ul><ul><li>Cock-fighting enthusiasts </li></ul><ul><li>Duck far...
Industrial Producers <ul><li>Well organized, politically sophisticated </li></ul><ul><li>Major drivers of government polic...
Poultry Population of Thailand Composition by # of  birds Composition by # of  flocks
Growth of the Thai Poultry Sector
Cock-Fighters <ul><li>Actual number of fighting cocks low (6-10 million birds) but supported politically by larger communi...
Cock-fighters (cont.) <ul><li>Strong proponents of vaccination  </li></ul><ul><li>Cock-fighters badly impacted by movement...
Fighting Cock Passports
Duck Farmers <ul><li>Industry rose in prominence/importance in wake of economic crisis </li></ul><ul><li>Formerly sideline...
Duck Farmers (cont.) <ul><li>Duck farmers targeted for control after research identified ducks as important reservoir for ...
Public Health Community <ul><li>Human health has long been held up as the central goal of HPAI prevention efforts </li></u...
Concluding Comments <ul><li>Thai response gave disproportionate advantage to large producers & nearly wiped out small comm...
Concluding comments (cont.) <ul><li>“ Effective” information management preserved image of Thailand internationally while ...
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The Political Economy of HPAI in Thailand by Rachel M. Safman

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In February 2009, an expert meeting co-hosted by the STEPS Centre and Chatham House and funded by DFID/the World Bank was held in Hove, Sussex, UK. The meeting reviewed country-level experiences of HPAI response in Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia. This is the presentation from the Thailand work. Find out more at: http://www.steps-centre.org/ourresearch/avianflu.html

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Transcript of "The Political Economy of HPAI in Thailand by Rachel M. Safman"

  1. 1. The Political Economy of HPAI in Thailand Rachel M. Safman, Ph.D.
  2. 2. Key Characteristics <ul><li>Thailand in recovery from Asian Economy crisis at time HPAI hit </li></ul><ul><li>Thai political system in transition – era of populist & pro-business politics under leadership of Thaksin Shinawatra </li></ul><ul><li>Thai poultry industry is large, profitable and sophisticated (4 th largest poultry exporter @ time HPAI hit) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Overview of the Crisis <ul><li>~33 million birds destroyed (2,000 flocks infected) </li></ul><ul><li>$130 M (USD) in losses in first wave of infections alone </li></ul><ul><li>Human infections: 25 cases, 17 deaths </li></ul><ul><li>4 waves of disease (in poultry) with shift from epidemic to endemic pattern of infection </li></ul>
  4. 4. Chronology of HPAI in Thailand I II III IV
  5. 5. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>1 st appearance of disease – Nov ’03 </li></ul><ul><li>Government initially denied HPAI’s presences – treat as point-outbreak </li></ul><ul><li>Admitted to outbreak in Jan 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>2 human cases (deaths) </li></ul><ul><li>1 st wave: 32/76 provinces affected, 30 M birds culled </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  6. 6. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Response to 1 st wave adhered closely to international guidelines </li></ul><ul><li>5 km cull radius, movement controls </li></ul><ul><li>Compensation of farmers @ 75% of market value resulted in high levels of compliance – but logistical complications in implementing culls </li></ul><ul><li>Export ban (90 days) </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  7. 7. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Virus waned May ’04, re-appeared in July ’04 </li></ul><ul><li>Attempt to deny re-emergence </li></ul><ul><li>2 nd wave more widespread and intense than 1 st (264 districts, ~1500 flocks) </li></ul><ul><li>More targeted culling reduced economic losses (3 M birds culled) </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  8. 8. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>X-ray surveillance introduced Oct 04 </li></ul><ul><li>Nationwide active case-finding based on house-to-house survey </li></ul><ul><li>Integrated effort of public health and animal health control authorities </li></ul><ul><li>Dramatic increase in case detection initially, but ultimately effective in bringing epidemic under control </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  9. 9. Surveillance Rapid Response System
  10. 10. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>3 rd “wave” appeared June ’05, following long disease-free hiatus </li></ul><ul><li>2 days before TH was to be declared “bird flu free” </li></ul><ul><li>Limited duration and extent but major psychological blow </li></ul><ul><li>Infection pattern closer to seasonal recurrence of endemic infection </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  11. 11. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Data collected via ongoing X-ray surveillance allowed for more targeted intervention </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on role of ducks as hosts/ vectors of transmission </li></ul><ul><li>Small poultry producers also targeted </li></ul><ul><li>National Strategic Plan adopted </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  12. 12. National Strategic Plan <ul><li>Enhanced bio-security at production points </li></ul><ul><li>Ongoing disease monitoring w/periodic active surveillance (X-ray campaigns) </li></ul><ul><li>Public education to promote safe handling and quick response to human disease </li></ul><ul><li>Capacity building within public health system </li></ul><ul><li>Integrated response management </li></ul>
  13. 13. Timeline of Major Events <ul><li>Since 2006 TH has experienced semi-annual outbreaks of low intensity, typically v.localized </li></ul><ul><li>No human cases since early 2006 </li></ul><ul><li>Response has now shifted (quietly) to more endemic-style of control, though with readiness for large-scale outbreak </li></ul>Jan 2004 Jun 2004 Jan 2005 Jun 2005 Jan 2006
  14. 14. Major Policy Positions <ul><li>Preventative culling of all susceptible animals within 1-10 km radius of cases </li></ul><ul><li>Movement controls w.i./10 km – permit needed to move animals from/through </li></ul><ul><li>Census & registration of livestock </li></ul><ul><li>Upgrading of livestock facilities </li></ul><ul><li>No preventative vaccination of animals </li></ul><ul><li>Readying of public health facilities & staff </li></ul>
  15. 15. Key Stakeholder Groups <ul><li>Industrial producers </li></ul><ul><li>Cock-fighting enthusiasts </li></ul><ul><li>Duck farmers </li></ul><ul><li>Public Health community </li></ul>
  16. 16. Industrial Producers <ul><li>Well organized, politically sophisticated </li></ul><ul><li>Major drivers of government policy </li></ul><ul><li>Primarily concerned with maintaining (restoring) access to foreign markets </li></ul><ul><li>Militantly opposed to the use of vaccination (in any subsector) </li></ul><ul><li>Very closely linked to policy-makers through personal and business connections </li></ul>
  17. 17. Poultry Population of Thailand Composition by # of birds Composition by # of flocks
  18. 18. Growth of the Thai Poultry Sector
  19. 19. Cock-Fighters <ul><li>Actual number of fighting cocks low (6-10 million birds) but supported politically by larger community of enthusiasts </li></ul><ul><li>Became proxies for small-holders and rural residents more generally, therefore important constituency for Thaksin </li></ul><ul><li>Represented through lobbying groups with excellent media access </li></ul><ul><li>History of defying government policy </li></ul>
  20. 20. Cock-fighters (cont.) <ul><li>Strong proponents of vaccination </li></ul><ul><li>Cock-fighters badly impacted by movement controls – also poorly served by other gov. policies </li></ul><ul><li>Used strategies of popular resistance to pressure administration to loosen vaccine and movement controls </li></ul><ul><li>Widespread subversion of policy – illegal vaccine use & illicit movement of birds </li></ul>
  21. 21. Fighting Cock Passports
  22. 22. Duck Farmers <ul><li>Industry rose in prominence/importance in wake of economic crisis </li></ul><ul><li>Formerly sideline enterprise but now main source of income for duck herders </li></ul><ul><li>Production largely decentralized but funded by locally influential backers </li></ul><ul><li>Current production techniques: low-cost, high yield (from farmers’ perspective) </li></ul>
  23. 23. Duck Farmers (cont.) <ul><li>Duck farmers targeted for control after research identified ducks as important reservoir for disease & transmission vector </li></ul><ul><li>Attempts to shift production to closed-farm systems and prevent trans-provincial movement – strongly opposed by farmers </li></ul><ul><li>Poor enforcement of legislation – few mechanisms for outreach, enforcement </li></ul>
  24. 24. Public Health Community <ul><li>Human health has long been held up as the central goal of HPAI prevention efforts </li></ul><ul><li>Public health community in TH is organized, technologically sophisticated and well networked internationally </li></ul><ul><li>Saw HPAI response as a continuation of earlier outbreaks (HIV, SARS, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>Used HPAI as opportunity for capacity building & to raise int’l prestige </li></ul>
  25. 25. Concluding Comments <ul><li>Thai response gave disproportionate advantage to large producers & nearly wiped out small commercial producers </li></ul><ul><li>Timing of epidemic emphasized commercial interests over social impact </li></ul><ul><li>Close alliances between government and industry shifted policy-making out of realm of popular participation </li></ul>
  26. 26. Concluding comments (cont.) <ul><li>“ Effective” information management preserved image of Thailand internationally while diminishing internal effectiveness of control efforts </li></ul><ul><li>Public health-veterinary health alliances (SRRT) developed as part of HPAI response may offer effective model for future emergent infectious disease response </li></ul>
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