China has stepped up efforts to prevent the spread of H7N9 avian flu following reports of scattered human cases of the virus that earlier killed five people.
Several provinces are taking measures to contain the virus, Xinhua news agency reported. Beijing on Saturday reported a human H7N9 case. The patient was a 68-year-old man from Langfang in neighboring Hebei.
‘Beijing on Saturday reported a human H7N9 case. The patient was a 68-year-old man from Langfang in neighboring Hebei.’
Authorities closed 280 live poultry trading and slaughtering venues at Suining in Sichuan after four human H7N9 cases were reported in the city, according to health authorities. Officials in Suining have enhanced inspections to crack down on unlicensed poultry businesses.
Central China's Hubei province has set up a command centre for the prevention and control of a human H7N9 outbreak. Hubei confirmed 19 human H7N9 cases from January 1 to February 9. Two patients have been discharged from the hospital after recovering.
In Changsha, capital of China's Hunan province, business at live poultry markets has been suspended. The province has reported five deaths among 24 H7N9 cases this year. East China's Zhejiang Province ordered all markets across the province to suspend live poultry trading over bird flu concerns.
The Zhejiang Centre for Disease Control and Prevention employees said the province had entered a high season of a possible bird flu outbreak. In January, Zhejiang reported 35 infections of the H7N9 strain of the bird flu. Contact with live poultry is the major source of infection, particularly in rural areas.
H7N9 is a bird flu strain first reported to have infected humans in China in March 2013. It is most likely to strike in winter and spring. Liaoning, Jiangsu, Shandong, Henan, Guangdong and Guizhou provinces have all reported human H7N9 cases this year.