25 Apr 2008

American Samoa prepares for health care at Arts Festival

5:47 pm on 25 April 2008

American Samoa's Medical Director says prevention will be the key element in a plan to ensure there will be no health problems during this year's Arts Festival.

Dr Ivan Tuliau says having thousands of people converging in the territory at the same time presents a lot of health concerns.

Pointing to the experience in Palau after it hosted the last festival, Dr. Tuliau said there was an outbreak of malaria and dengue fever.

There was also an upsurge in sexually transmitted diseases.

He says the Health Department is strongly recommending that all participants update their immunisation shots to include measles, mumps, rubella and tuberculosis.

The Health Department also plans to have medical mobile tents at the main festival venues, the Samoana Field in Utulei and the Veterans Stadium at Tafuna .