China reports 1 more H7N9 bird flu death
H7N9 bird flu cases in China could 'take priority' over investigating Canada's H5N1 death, expert says
China reported one more death from the H7N9 strain of bird flu in eastern Fujian province, state news agency Xinhua said on Friday.
A 38-year-old man from Quanzhou city died after being found infected earlier on Friday, Xinhua said, citing the province's
health and family planning commission.
Xinhua said this was the first human case of H7N9 in Fujian this year.
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Separately, Xinhua said two people were infected with H7N9 in eastern Zhejiang province — a 79-year-old woman and a
The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday that seven more people in China have been found to be infected with the H7N9 strain of bird flu in the past week, taking to around 150 the total number of cases so far.
The H7N9 bird flu emerged last year in China and has infected around 150 people there and in Taiwan and Hong Kong,
killing at least 45 of them.
China is dealing with two bird flu strains this season, H7N9 and H5N1. There have been fewer than than 650 human cases of bird flu in 15 countries over the last decade, according to the World Health Organization. Neither strain is responsible for seasonal flu.
Health officials in Canada and China are investigating the death of a female health-care worker in her 20s from H5N1 who'd recently travelled to Beijing. But the H7N9 cases could slow down the investigation in China, said Richard Webby, an infectious disease researcher at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.
"In terms of their things of relative concern right now, the H7N9, which is the other bird flu that they are dealing with right now, I would think is going to take priority over this particular case," said Webby, who studies bird flu viruses.
Experts say there is no evidence as yet of any easy or sustained person-to person transmission of the H7N9 strain.
But an early scientific analysis of probable transmission of the new H7N9 flu from person to person, published last August, gave the strongest proof yet that it can at times jump between people and so could cause a human pandemic.
The WHO said the source of the human infections was still being investigated. It stressed it does not advise any special
screening for people going in and out of China, nor does it recommend any travel or trade curbs.
With files from CBC's Kas Roussy