Mar 12, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – The accumulation of human cases of H5N1 avian influenza continued with the reporting of one case each in Egypt and Indonesia in the past 2 days.
Officials in Egypt said a 4-year-old boy from the Nile delta town of Daqahliya tested positive yesterday, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) report published yesterday. The World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed the case in a notice today.
The boy, who fell ill Mar 7 and was hospitalized the next day, was in stable condition, the WHO said. A health ministry official said the boy caught the virus from birds raised by his family, according to AFP.
Egypt has had 24 confirmed H5N1 cases, 13 of them fatal, according to the WHO. Those include six cases with three deaths so far this year; the rest were in 2006.
In Indonesia, officials reported today that a 20-year-old woman from East Java was in critical condition in a hospital, according to a Reuters report. Joko Suyono, a data analyst at the national avian flu center in Jakarta, said the woman had cleaned an area where a neighbor had dumped dead chickens, the story said.
By the WHO's count, Indonesia has had 81 human cases of H5N1 illness, with 63 deaths. The WHO has not yet recognized the young woman's case or four previous cases reported by Indonesian officials since Jan 29, when the agency confirmed a fatal H5N1 infection in a 6-year-old girl from Central Java province. Those four cases involved a 15-year-old girl and a 30-year-old man, reported Feb 6, plus a 22-year-old woman and a 9-year-old boy, reported Feb 12. Both of the latter patients died of the illness.
With the new case in Egypt, the WHO's global tally of human cases reported since H5N1 began spreading widely in late 2003 reached 278 cases with 168 deaths.
In other developments, South Korea reported killing more than 35,000 ducks on farms to control an H5N1 outbreak reported last week, according to an AFP report published yesterday.
The disease erupted on a breeding farm in Cheonan, 56 miles south of Seoul, the story said. A city official said culling was done on that farm and four neighboring farms.
Jan 29 WHO statement