News update:Mar 9, 2016

H5N1 claims tenth life in Cambodia

A nine-year-old boy has become the 10th person this year to die of bird flu in Cambodia, the World Health Organization has announced.

The UN agency said the boy from a village in northeastern Battambang province came down with fever and vomiting on July 26 and was diagnosed with the H5N1 avian influenza virus.

The statement said there had been recent deaths among chickens and ducks in his village, and that the boy had carried dead and sick poultry from a cage for food preparation by his sister before he became sick.

In a report submitted to the OIE, an outbreak on a backyard poultry farm was confirmed in Damnak Dangkor village. An investigation team of the National Veterinary Research Institute (NaVRI) of the Department of Animal Health and Production (DAHP) and provincial veterinary services went to the village to investigate and take some samples from local chicken. The test results were confirmed positive for H5N1.

In total 2,000 birds have been culled and control measures have been put in place.

The virus normally spreads among poultry, but can sometimes spread from poultry to humans.

The 10 fatalities this year are the country's highest annual total since the virus surfaced in 2003, and also the highest for any country this year. There have been more than 633 confirmed cases of bird flu worldwide since 2003, about 60% of them fatal.

World Poultry

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