The Canadian Olympic Committee vaccinates athletes against serious travel-related illness in preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games



    - 500 Canadian athletes and team members will be protected against
    Travellers' Diarrhea while in China -

    TORONTO, Sept. 12 /CNW/ - The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) announced
today that it is equipping Canadian athletes competing in the 2008 Beijing
Olympic Games with a vaccine to protect against Travellers' Diarrhea - a
health concern and serious performance issue for athletes heading to China.
DUKORAL(R), an oral vaccine has been donated by sanofi pasteur to the Canadian
Olympic Team for 2007 training in Beijing and for the Olympic Games in 2008.
By the opening ceremony, a total of 500 athletes and team members will have
been vaccinated against Traveller's Diarrhea.
    "The Canadian Olympic Committee weighed all of the information and data
before making this important decision," said Dr. Bob McCormack, Chief Medical
Officer for the Canadian Olympic Team. "The Committee was proactive in looking
at risk reduction methods to protect our athletes while in China. We took a
preventative approach because we want our athletes to be able to compete at
the Games and not be sidelined by Travellers' Diarrhea at a time of such
critical importance."
    DUKORAL(R) is the only preventative vaccine available in Canada to help
protect against Travellers' Diarrhea. The most common cause of Travellers'
Diarrhea is food and water contaminated with bacteria called enterotoxigenic
Escherichia coli (ETEC).(1) Food and water borne illnesses represent a
significant health threat to Canadians travelling outside of Canada,
especially to developing countries.
    It is estimated that up to 50 per cent of travellers to high risk areas
such as third world countries on a trip of two weeks or more, will contract
Travellers' Diarrhea. In fact, the most common bacterial cause of Travellers'
Diarrhea is enterotoxic E. coli which is a vaccine-preventable infection. To
further reduce the risk of contracting this illness, individuals should take
the following precautionary measures while travelling:

    
    -   Drink bottled water or carbonated soft drinks, bottled fruit juices,
        hot beverages, and refreshments without ice
    -   Drink pasteurized, properly refrigerated milk
    -   Peel your fruits and vegetables yourself or better yet, have them
        cooked.
    -   Make sure that food is well cooked. Avoid food from street-vendors
        and avoid eating raw or undercooked meat or fish
    

    "Travellers' Diarrhea is a preventable illness that should be taken
seriously," said Dr. Brian Aw, Canadian travel health expert. "For athletes,
the Olympic Games are the culmination of years of hard work and dedication,
and vaccination is an essential risk reduction measure that should be
considered. I recommend that all Canadians speak with their physician about
travel vaccinations before travelling to China or any other developing
country."

    DUKORAL(R) is the only vaccine currently available in Canada to prevent
Travellers' Diarrhea caused by ETEC.(1) DUKORAL(R) is an oral vaccine
indicated for protection against Travellers' Diarrhea/or cholera in adults and
children two years of age and older.
    The donation of DUKORAL(R) to the Canadian Olympic Committee has been
facilitated through the cooperation of Johnson & Johnson, Official Partner of
the Beijing 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Worldwide Partner of the
International Olympic Committee (IOC), and partner of more than 200 National
Olympic Committees around the world. As the Official Health Care Products
Sponsor, Johnson & Johnson companies work with the Canadian Olympic Committee
to support the athletes and promote quality health care practices.

    About The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC)

    The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) is a national, private,
not-for-profit organization committed to sport excellence. It is responsible
for all aspects of Canada's involvement in the Olympic movement, including
Canada's participation in the Olympic and Pan American Games and a wide
variety of programs that promote the Olympic Movement in Canada through
cultural and educational means. For more information, see the COC website:
www.olympic.ca.

    --------------------------------
    (1) DUKORAL(R) Product Monograph, Aventis Pasteur Limited, February 2003.





For further information:

For further information: Sylvie Bigras, Manager, Games Communications,
Canadian Olympic Committee, (613) 298-1625, sbigras@olympic.ca

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Canadian Olympic Committee

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