China: Closing live poultry markets helps control bird flu
A study by scientists from the Chinese Centre for Disease Control found that by closing live poultry markets resulted in a drop in human infections, in the area, by 97-99%.
The study analysed the H7N9 outbreak in four Chinese cities earlier this year. Researchers collected the age, sex, location, residence and date of illness onset from every laboratory-confirmed case of H7N9 infection. This allowed them to determine the before and after effect on poultry market closure.
The paper recommends "sustained" closure of live poultry markets in areas at high risk of disease spread, and their immediate closure in the area where infection is concerned.
A separate study undertaken by the Royal Veterinary College earlier this year said bird markets could become a "permanent" source of human infection, and recommended interventions such as daily disinfection of trading areas, vehicles and equipment.
The H7N9 outbreak, at the beginning of April this year, resulted in the closure of 780 live poultry markets in the cities of Shanghai, Hangzhou, Huzuo and Nanjing, as well as the suspension of the pet bird trade.
It is estimated the closure of bird markets this year cost the Chinese poultry industry up to €5.9 billion.
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