(CIDRAP News) Last month, officials in Italy and Canada aroused concern by announcing they had found an H5N1 influenza virus in wild birds. Neither country had previously been troubled by any reports of the virulent H5N1 virus that has been plaguing poultry and occasionally sickening and killing humans in Asia.
But in both cases, health officials said the virus was not dangerous and was unrelated to the H5N1 virus in Asia.
(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) An Indonesian woman who died in a Jakarta hospital yesterday has tested positive for H5N1 avian influenza, according to officials quoted in The Jakarta Post. Further testing is pending at a World Health Organization (WHO) reference laboratory in Hong Kong.
(CIDRAP News) Canadian officials said yesterday they would destroy all the poultry on a British Columbia farm where a duck was found to be carrying a low-pathogenic H5 avian influenza virus.
That announcement came 2 days after the Canadian government reported the identification of a low-pathogenic strain of H5N1 virus in wild birds in Manitoba and other flu viruses in wild birds in British Columbia and Quebec.
(CIDRAP News) Preliminary tests indicate H5N1 avian influenza caused the death of a 35-year-old Indonesian man in Jakarta on Nov 19, according to a government official quoted today in the Jakarta Post.
However, Indonesia is awaiting confirmation from a World Health Organization (WHO) reference laboratory of what would be the country's eighth fatality from avian flu. WHO has already confirmed 11 cases, seven of them fatal, in Indonesia.
(CIDRAP News) In China, Indonesia, and Vietnam, countries widely seen as ground zero in the global fight against H5N1 avian influenza, efforts to quash the virus are hampered by the lack of a key weapon: money.
(CIDRAP News) Thailand has reported its 21st human case of H5N1 avian influenza, while an infected flamingo was found in Kuwait and new poultry outbreaks surfaced in China, according to news reports today.
An 18-month-old boy in Bangkok was diagnosed with the H5N1 virus today, but he was already well on the way to recovery, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) report quoting Thawat Sunthrajarn, Thailand's disease control director.
(CIDRAP News) Concluding a major conference on avian and pandemic influenza today, health officials reported a new level of international agreement on the need to confront the threat and released a list of key steps to do that.
(CIDRAP News) The United States proposed today that a small group of experts be appointed immediately to plan a fast response in case an influenza pandemic erupts, as an international conference on avian and pandemic flu continued in Geneva.