Core public health protection functions are to protect the Cook Islands population from national and international public health threats and emergencies including communicable diseases such as Dengue fever, sexually transmitted infections, HIV/AIDS, and Avian influenza. The implementation of the Cook Islands International Health Regulations (IHR) 2008-2010 work plan included the establishment of the Event Surveillance and Response (ESR) unit in 2008-2009. Phase 2 will focus on the activation of this unit and activities to ensure the Cook Islands health system will meet IHR requirements by 2010. This work will contribute directly to the strengthening of national health surveillance and response systems including border control at all ports of entry, closer working relationships between the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Agriculture and the detection, investigation and management of outbreaks. Other programs include the implementation and enforcement of the sanitation (2008) and food regulations (2008). Programs focused on the elimination of Filariasis as well as reducing the risk for Dengue fever becoming endemic.
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