Four H7N9 cases, one fatal, reported in China
The H7N9 avian influenza virus has sickened four more people, one fatally, ing China's Guangdong province, Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP) said today in a statement.
Though few details were listed for the patients, the report said the latest case-patients include three men and one woman ages 51 to 82 years old. The 82-year-old man died from his infection, and the rest are hospitalized in critical condition.
Today's cases would increase the global total of H7N9 cases to 592, according to a running case list kept by FluTrackers, an infectious disease news message board.
Feb 13 CHP statement
FluTrackers H7N9 case list
Meanwhile, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said yesterday in an epidemiologic update that the H7N9 outbreaks are showing a seasonal pattern, with a peak from January through March in China's cold season and sporadic cases in the summer.
It said the third wave started in October and has included 114 cases as of Feb 11. For comparison, the ECDC said 135 cases were reported in the first wave in 2013 and 319 cases in the second wave, which occurred from the end of 2013 through part of 2014.
So far the case-fatality rate for the third wave, at 24%, appears to be lower than for the other two—32% for the first wave and 42% for the second wave. The information, however, may not be complete, the ECDC added.
Feb 12 ECDC epidemiologic update
FAO notes 6 previously unreported H5N1 cases in Egypt
In an animal influenza update yesterday, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recognized 22 human cases of H5N1 avian flu in Egypt from Jan 18 to Feb 7, and 6 of them appear to be new.
Three of the new cases are in Monufia governorate, while Dakahlia, Faiyum, and Suez governorates had one each, according to FluTrackers, an infectious disease news message board that diligently tracks cases. The FAO did not provide any demographic or other information on these previously unreported cases.
FluTrackers has confirmed 53 H5N1 cases already this year in Egypt, on the basis of global health agency and health ministry statements. The country confirmed 30 cases all of last year, according to the most recent data from the World Health Organization.
The FAO report also noted an H9N2 avian flu infection in a 3-year-old boy in Aswan governorate, the first such case in Egypt. The boy has a history of contact with backyard poultry "which were apparently healthy," the agency said.
Feb 12 FAO report
Feb 13 FluTrackers post on the H5N1 cases
FluTrackers H5N1 case listing
Another H5N1 outbreak strikes turkeys in western Israel
Israel has notified the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) of yet another outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N1 avian flu in the same region where multiple outbreaks have occurred in recent weeks, according to a report posted yesterday.
The outbreak occurred in 9-week-old turkeys on a farm in the village of Kefar Vitkin in Israel's Central District. Of 18,000 susceptible birds, 1,000 were infected, 200 fatally, for an apparent morbidity rate of 5.6% and an apparent case-fatality rate of 20%. The remaining birds in the flock were destroyed to prevent disease spread.
A quarantine of the farm was imposed and disinfection of the premises is planned. The OIE report says this outbreak is very near the village of Kfar Monash, where another H5N1 outbreak was very recently reported.
The Central District and the Haifa District just to its north have been the sites of eight H5N1 outbreaks among turkeys and chickens since the first of the year, according to OIE reports. Both are in western Israel with coastline along the Mediterranean.
Feb 12 OIE report
Feb 3 CIDRAP News scan on Israel outbreaks