Press Release

Statement by the Department of Health and Children – SARS Press Briefing

Speaking today at the press briefing on SARS, Micheál Martin TD, Minister for Health and Children said that he had a constructive meeting this afternoon with the Canadian Ambassador to Ireland Mark Moher. Ambassador Moher briefed Minister Martin and officials of the Department of Health and Children on the current situation with regard to SARS in Canada. Ambassador Moher expressed confidence that the Toronto authorities had the situation under control and this has been confirmed by the World Health Organisation. Dr Jim Kiely Chief Medical Officer, will be in direct contact with the Canadian Chief Medical Officer over the next number of days.

The SARS Expert group met today and as usual reviewed aspects of epidemiology care management and investigation of SARS. It updated some advice in relation to treatment and surveillance and that updated advice will be on the DOH Web site. As part of the ongoing discussion of the Special Olympics world games the chief medical officer briefed the expert group on the yesterday’s meeting with the Chinese Ambassador. The Expert Group will meet again on Friday.

The Health Service Implementation Group, comprising Department of Health and Children officials and Health Board CEO´s today held a tele-conference briefing at which measures in place nationally were reviewed. There been ongoing contact bi-laterally today with members of the Interdepartmental Group, particularly in relation to transport issues.