Guang­dong wor­ries bird flu out­break is pos­si­ble

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - NATION - By ZHENG CAIXIONG in Guangzhou and SHAN JUAN in Bei­jing

Guang­dong prov­ince has warned of a pos­si­ble out­break of H7N9 bird flu in the com­ing months af­ter a new case was re­ported on Wed­nes­day.

Zhang Yonghui, di­rec­tor of Guang­dong pro­vin­cial center of disease con­trol, warned that Guang­dong has en­tered a peak pe­riod for flu cases.

Cities in the Pearl River Delta, which bor­ders Hong Kong and Ma­cao, have higher risks of an out­break of H7N9 in win­ter and spring, “the tra­di­tion­ally peak pe­riod for flu”, Zhang said.

A case of H7N9 flu, the fifth in Guang­dong prov­ince, was con­firmed in Yangjiang on Wed­nes­day, ac­cord­ing to the Guang­dong Pro­vin­cial Depart­ment of Health.

The new pa­tient, a 62-year-old res­i­dent sur­named Liang is in crit­i­cal con­di­tion.

This is the third hu­man H7N9 case in four days, bring­ing the to­tal H7N9 cases in the prov­ince to five since Au­gust.

Dong­guan and Huizhou have also re­ported H7N9 cases.

Chen Yuan­sheng, di­rec­tor of the Guang­dong Pro­vin­cial Depart­ment of Health, has urged doc­tors across the prov­ince to get ready to fight the disease.

“Hos­pi­tals should pre­pare enough medicine, while doc­tors should be well-trained to help han­dle the pos­si­ble in­crease in H7N9 bird flu pa­tients,” Chen said.

Chen said pa­tients who have been in con­tact with poul­try and have a fever and other flu symp­toms should be treated with Tam­i­flu within 48 hours of when they fall ill.

“Hos­pi­tals, doc­tors and other med­i­cal per­son­nel will be pun­ished or held re­spon­si­ble for their de­lay in treat­ing pa­tients,” Chen said at a tele­vised con­fer­ence on pre­vent­ing and fight­ing H7N9 bird flu in Guangzhou on Tues­day af­ter­noon.

He stressed the need for early dis­cov­ery, di­ag­no­sis and treat­ment.

Lin Shaochun, deputy gov­er­nor of the prov­ince, has urged gov­ern­ment de­part­ments to take con­crete and ef­fec­tive mea­sures to pre­vent and fight H7N9 bird flu in the com­ing months.

The agri­cul­tural depart­ment has been asked to tighten man­age­ment of poul­try farms, en­sure only healthy live poul­try is sold to lo­cal mar­kets, and see that all ve­hi­cles trans­port­ing poul­try are ster­il­ized be­fore op­er­a­tion, Lin said.

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