United States: Currently, most US dairy farms are observed not to enhance health measures for the employees during breakout amongst Cows, as seen by the workers, activists, and farmers. 

This has caused health professionals to worry about the likelihood of increased human infection with the virus, which has the potential to cause a pandemic. 

Virus mutation has made humans susceptible 

About the virus, epidemiologists fear it may attain capability of transmission leading to serious illnesses while as farmers they may not be so much worried about the risk to the workers as the workers themselves barely get informed of the instances of US cattle. 

Lack of PPE on Dairy Farms Puts Workers at Risk of Bird Flu Infection. Credit | The New York Times
Lack of PPE on Dairy Farms Puts Workers at Risk of Bird Flu Infection. Credit | The New York Times

The authorities of the United States announced yesterday that a second employee of a dairy company was infected with bird flu since cattle did strain during mid-March and no one knows whether the man used or was offered any protective gear as reported by Reuters. 

About 24, 000 farms give milk that is sold in the United States and the measures that they offer for workers also vary. 

Dairy farms are cautioned to follow the government guidelines 

In this case, the National Milk Producers Federation which is a lobby group indicated that it cautioned farms to follow federal guidelines such as the protective gear for workers and nullified news of enhanced worker safeguards. 

Seven protestors, three workers, and two attorneys representing farm employees all reiterated the same complaints that despite working 10-12 hours at a time close to cows, the bosses do not supply helmets, goggles, and shields in order to protect themselves from possible virus exposure, as Reuters reported. 

The workers, all of them involved in dairy operations in New York and other vital dairy-producing regions, got to know the new disease affecting their animals either via the news or community health promoters and not their employers. To illustrate, one 39-year-old Luis Jimenez, a foreign worker who is Mexican, observed, ‘I think last week it was normal.’ ‘ 

In April and May, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) sent alerts for workers to use personal protective equipment (PPE) if getting exposed to sick livestock after a dairy worker in Texas contracted bird flu, as per Reuters. 

Hence, on May 6, the health authority even requested the states to provide equipment to workers. 

The CDC urged “to make sure that farm workers across the country, whether they are at a farm with an affected herd or not, have access to PPE,” said Nirav Shah, principal deputy director. 

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