(CIDRAP News) A recent exercise that confronted international leaders with a hypothetical smallpox attack showed the potential for tensions between countries that have enough smallpox vaccine and those that don't, according to news reports.
(CIDRAP News) Avian flu extended its reach into new territory by spreading to Turkey and possibly Romania in the past week, while Indonesians face another suspected human case of H5N1 flu and allegations of vaccine-related fraud.
(CIDRAP News) The avian influenza virus long established in Southeast Asia has reached Europe's doorstep, with confirmation today that a lethal virus in Turkey is H5N1 and that an H5 strain in Romania is still being subtyped.
(CIDRAP News) New avian influenza outbreaks were reported today in European Russia, China, and Vietnam, as experts said recent outbreaks in Turkey and Romania have strengthened the suspicion that migratory birds are spreading the H5N1 virus.
In addition, avian flu was suspected in a Thai man who died of a lung infection after killing and eating chickens that might have had the disease.
(CIDRAP News) A 48-year-old Thai man who died yesterday had H5N1 avian influenza, marking Thailand's first human case in more than a year, according to Thai officials and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The man, who fell ill after slaughtering sick chickens, had the first case in Thailand since Oct 8, 2004, the WHO said. Thailand has had 18 confirmed cases, including 13 deaths, since the current wave of H5N1 outbreaks began in late 2003.
(CIDRAP News) The World Health Organization (WHO) warned today that if H5N1 avian influenza spread to Africa and caused human cases, it "could push fragile health systems to the brink of collapse."
Also, China today ruled out H5N1 avian flu in the death of a girl who lived in a village recently hit by a poultry outbreak, while Romania reported finding the virus for the first time in an area other than the Danube delta.
(CIDRAP News) Two more human cases of H5N1 avian influenza have been confirmed, one in a Chinese woman who has recovered and the other in a 5-year-old Thai boy who died Dec 7, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced today.
The cases increase the human toll of the virus over the past 2 years to 137 cases, including 70 deaths, according to the WHO. Exposure to poultry is the suspected cause in both of the latest cases.
(CIDRAP News) New outbreaks of avian influenza in birds were reported this week in Romania and Turkey, but wild birds that died mysteriously in Malawi in southern Africa were found to be free of flu viruses.
Tests in Britain detected H5N1 viruses in seven samples sent from four areas in southeastern Romania, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) report published yesterday. The story did not specify what kinds of birds were involved.