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China Confirms Human Case of Bird Flu

Posted: Mar. 1, 2007
Updated: Mar. 2 2:30 p.m.

BEIJING China reported a new human case of bird flu on Thursday, and the World Health Organization disputed Indonesia's claim that the two were close to resolving a dispute over sharing virus samples that could be used to develop a commercial vaccine.
Also Thursday, officials in Myanmar said the United Nations has pledged assistance in coping with an outbreak discovered on a poultry farm on the outskirts of its largest city, Yangon.
The human infection in China occurred in the coastal province of Fujian, where a 44-year-old farmer surnamed Li was diagnosed on February 18 after she developed a fever and began coughing, the official Xinhua News Agency said.
It was the mainland's first human case of bird flu since January 10, when the government said a 37-year-old farmer in Anhui province in eastern China had contracted bird flu but had recovered.
State media said Li raised only a handful of chickens. China Daily and the Xinhua News Agency said health officials have ruled out the possibility of an outbreak in poultry in Li's village and that the source of infection may have been migratory birds.
Xinhua said tests by the provincial disease control and prevention center showed that Li had been infected with the H5N1 virus strain, and that the Chinese Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had confirmed the result on February 27.
The report did not say whether the farmer worked with poultry, or whether infected birds were found, but said she had "made contact with dead fowl."
The virus remains essentially an animal disease, but experts fear it may mutate into a form easily spreadable between humans, triggering a pandemic.
In Indonesia, Health Minister Siti Fadilah Supari said a guarantee letter from WHO Director General Margaret Chan was expected to arrive Thursday, after which "Indonesia will resume sending as soon as possible" samples of the bird flu virus to the U.N. health body.
However, WHO spokesman Dick Thompson told The Associated Press that no such deal had been cemented. He said that the letter was still under discussion.
It was hoped that such a deal would resolve a standoff between WHO and Indonesia, which triggered a storm of criticism last month by withholding virus samples because it worried that large drug companies would use its H5N1 strain to make vaccines too expensive for developing nations.
Several countries are developing vaccines to protect against H5N1, which has been responsible for at least 167 human deaths worldwide, more than one-third of them in Indonesia.
Meanwhile, Tang Zang Ping, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization representative in Myanmar, said the agency was assisting in isolation of poultry farms, disinfection and culling of birds after H5N1 was detected in a western suburb of Yangon.
Myanmar officials say the latest outbreak has affected chickens, ducks and pullets, killing 68 birds. Another 1,292 birds were deemed susceptible to the disease and destroyed.
In Vietnam, officials said the avian flu has resurfaced in the southern Mekong Delta province of Vinh Long, just days after an outbreak was reported in the northern part of the country.
About 50 unvaccinated ducks died at a farm in Tra On District on February 25, and test results released Thursday showed they were infected with the H5N1 strain of bird flu, said Nguyen Ba Thanh, director of the Mekong regional animal health center.
The outbreak has forced authorities to slaughter 800 ducklings, Thanh said.
Vietnam went an entire year without any confirmed reports of bird flu until a recent spate of outbreaks struck Vinh Long and seven other southern provinces in January, killing or forcing the slaughter of about 40,000 birds.
how about a nice hot steaming bowl of STFU!

00110001 00110011 01101011 and damn proud of it!

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Old 03-03-2007, 05:13 AM curdledvomit is offline  
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