Toddler Becomes Indonesia's 113th Bird Flu Victim: WHO

by VR Sreeraman on  December 11, 2008 at 11:31 AM Bird Flu News   - G J E 4
A two-year-old Indonesian girl has died of bird flu, the country's 113th fatality from the disease, the World Health Organisation said Wednesday.
Toddler Becomes Indonesia's 113th Bird Flu Victim: WHO
Toddler Becomes Indonesia's 113th Bird Flu Victim: WHO

A spokeswoman said the toddler from east Jakarta contracted the deadly strain of the virus on November 18, was hospitalised on November 26 and died three days later.

"Laboratory tests have confirmed infection with the H5N1 avian influenza virus. Initial investigations into the source of her infection suggest exposure at a live bird market," the WHO said in a statement.

It said the Indonesian health ministry had confirmed the death but officials were not immediately available to comment.

A nine-year-old girl from Riau province was hospitalised with bird flu on November 12 but she recovered and was discharged about two weeks later.

Tests confirmed the presence of the H5N1 avian influenza virus. The source of her infection was believed to be poultry kept at her home.

Indonesia has been the country hardest hit by bird flu, with its official toll of 113 deaths accounting for nearly half of worldwide fatalities from the disease.

The H5N1 virus typically spreads from birds to humans through direct contact, but experts fear it could mutate into a form easily transmissible between humans, with the potential to kill millions in a pandemic.

Source: AFP

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