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December 31, 2004

Chickens in Vietnam's northern region die of bird flu

Topics: Medicine

I have been on this topic for some time now because avian influenza can be deadly to humans and we continue to hear more and more about this year's spread of the virus. China has recently expressed grave concern for the problem (saying up to 100 million people may die) as I have previously reported here and here. First we heard Vietnam, then China, then Japan, and now Vietnam again. Hopefully we don't hear "Coming to a neighborhood near you" soon but that can and may very well happen. This thing is very dangerous and I don't think that we are taking sufficient precautions yet. This virus could be the source of our next pandemic, and it's already spreading. Just so you know, bird flu = avian influenza.

HANOI, Dec. 31 (Xinhuanet) -- Some 500 chickens in Vietnam's northern Nam Dinh province have just died of bird flu, which urgesthe country to beef up preventive measures, according to local newspaper Vietnam Agriculture Friday.

    Samples from dead fowls in Truc Ninh district are tested positive to bird flu virus strain of H5. The local veterinarian bureau, therefore, has culled the remainder of the affected flock of 917 chickens.

    Also early this week, southern Long An province spotted new outbreaks that killed and led to the forced culling of 3,871 chickens and ducks. Some 450 affected chickens have been recently reported in two other southern provinces of Dong Thap and Tien Giang.

    Vietnam's Department of Animal Health said outbreaks happened in seven wards and communes in the six southern localities of Can Tho, Bac Lieu, Long An, Tra Vinh, Hau Giang and Binh Phuoc betweenDec. 1 and Dec. 20, killing and leading to the forced culling of nearly 11,000 fowls.

    The recent relapse of bird flu, which has not been activated inthe northern region for some four months, in both southern and northern localities, has prompted more strong-handed measures in the country. Cities and provinces are detoxification and cleaning high-risk areas more frequently, and keeping closer surveillance on transport and sales of poultry, especially at the upcoming Lunar New Year Festival.

    Now, local health experts express concerns over the relapse of bird flu among fowls as well as humans this winter whose weather favors the development of viruses. Local doctors have just confirmed that a 16-year-old girl from southern Tay Ninh province is infected with the bird flu virus of H5N1.  The patient is in critical condition, needing assistance of a respirator, said the Hospital of Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City.

    Bird flu started to break out in Vietnam last December. To date,it has killed 20 people and led to the slaughtering of more than 40 million poultry in the country.

As I said in my Dec 22 article , "As I predicted some time ago (my final comment in this article) when I said that you would be hearing more about avian influenza, you are now hearing it. Well, I am now telling you again - you will be hearing more about avian influenza.

Posted by Hyscience at December 31, 2004 2:43 PM

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