News Scan for Oct 01, 2018

Saudi MERS cases
Human H5N6 in China
Avian flu outbreaks in 3 nations

Saudi Arabia notes 3 more MERS cases, 2 deaths

The Saudi Arabian Ministry of Health (MOH) noted two more MERS-CoV cases in epidemiologic week 39 (last week) and one in epidemiologic week 38, and two of the cases proved fatal.

The two cases recorded last week include two men from the Qaseem region. A 46-year-old man from Alasiah died from MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus). His exposure is still under investigation. And a 65-year-old man from Buraydah whose exposure was listed as "primary," meaning it's unlikely he contracted the disease from another person, is hospitalized. Neither man reported camel contact.

The case confirmed the week before involved a 66-year-old man from Buraydah. He died from his illness, and his exposure is not clear.

The new cases appear to have lifted the global MERS-CoV total to 2,258 cases since 2012, at least 800 of them fatal.
Sep 27 MOH report
Sep 29 MOH report


China reports human H5N6 avian flu case in Guangdong province

Yesterday Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP) reported a human case of H5N6 avian flu in Guangdong province.

A 22-old-man developed symptoms on Sep 25 and was hospitalized on Sep 26. He is in serious condition and told authorities he had contact with live poultry before falling ill.

According to the CHP, this case raises the total human cases of H5N6 reported in China since 2014 to 21. Authorities said everyone should practice good hygiene around live poultry and in open-air markets to prevent the spread of the virus.

In August, China confirmed the previous case of H5N6 in a man from Guangxi province.
Sep 30 CHP report


China, Bulgaria, Russia report high-path avian flu outbreaks in poultry

In the latest highly pathogenic avian flu developments, China reported an H5N6 outbreak involving poultry, and Bulgaria and Russia reported new detections involving other strains, according to separate notifications from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).

China's outbreak occurred in village birds in Guizhou province, located in the southwest. The event began on Sep 7, killing 4,948 of 37,299 susceptible birds. The survivors were culled to curb the spread of the virus. H5N6 has been known to infect humans in China, often fatally, and a new human case was recently reported in Guangdong province.

In Bulgaria, animal health officials reported an H5N8 outbreak that began on Sep 19 at a farm in Plovdiv province in the south central region. The virus killed 415 of 44,063 birds, and the rest were destroyed as part of the outbreak response.

Finally, Russia reported another H5 outbreak, this time at a farm in Rostov oblast in the west. The event started on Sep 24 and led to the deaths of 11,979 of 274,626 birds. The surviving ones were slated for culling. The source of the virus isn't known. Russia has reported several H5 outbreaks since June, and a recent avian flu overview from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on activity from May through August said recent Russian outbreaks have mainly involved the H5N8 strain.
Sep 30 OIE report on H5N6 in China
Sep 30 OIE report on H5N8 in Bulgaria
Oct 1 OIE report on H5 in Russia
Sep 24 ECDC avian flu overview

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