U.S. health officials have called for updated quarantine procedures, including better access to airline and ship passenger lists, to protect Americans from infectious diseases, including bird flu.

The changes, proposed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, would apply to planes and ships arriving from outside the United States as well as some domestic flights. The CDC also called for giving U.S. health officials more authority to administer medical treatment and vaccinations to quarantined people.

Health officials say the need for new regulations became apparent during the 2003 SARS, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome outbreak, when authorities found it difficult to get in touch with airline passengers who may have been exposed to the illness.

The proposals come amid growing concern about the spread of bird flu, which has killed more than 60 people in Asia since 2003.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.