New bird flu outbreak in China

03-07-2006 | |

A new outbreak of the H5N1 strain of bird flu has reportedly been discovered among poultry in China.

An area near Zhongwei, a city in the Ningxia region, is where the latest signs of H5N1 have emerged, according to a report by the government’s Xinhua News Agency.

There was no mention of how many or what type of birds were involved.

The Agriculture Ministry dispatched experts to control any possible outbreak in the area, while local authorities were disinfecting vehicles and people travelling in and out, according to Xinhua.

The news surfaces as experts are re-examining whether a Chinese man may have died of the avian influenza in 2003 – two years before any human cases were reported in the country. The man’s death was originally attributed to SARS.

China has reported more than 30 bird flu outbreaks in poultry since October. The country reported its first human cases of bird flu in 2005, and there have been 12 human fatalities in China from the disease since then.

SARS, which has very similar symptoms to bird flu, eventually killed 774 people worldwide.