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Nghe An to step up avian flu prevention

Update: April, 08/2015 - 09:07
The health ministry has asked the provincial health department to strengthen surveillance and diagnosis of suspected human cases, and hospitals have been instructed to set up isolation units. — Photo healthplus

NGHE AN (VNS) — The Ministry of Health has asked authorities in Nghe An Province to take drastic measures to stem an outbreak of avian influenza A/H5N6 and stop it from spreading to humans.

The move comes after the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) reported infected poultry in Xuan Nghia Commune, Quy Hop District at the beginning of April.

The ministry warned that there was a high risk of the virus spreading from poultry to humans and becoming an epidemic.

The health ministry has asked the provincial health department to strengthen surveillance and diagnosis of suspected human cases, and hospitals have been instructed to set up isolation units.

The provincial health department has been urged to collaborate with veterinarians and local authorities to supervise the handling of any outbreak.

Information about preventing avian influenza needed to be made available in areas with high numbers of poultry illnesses or deaths, especially during festivals.

The ministry also said people should take preventive measures by regularly washing their hands with soap and practising food safety.

People should report ill or dead poultry to local authorities, and people with symptoms of fever, coughing, chest pains and breathing difficulties should seek immediate medical help.

The department said that two poultry farmers from the area who had shown flu-like symptoms had been sent to the Central Tropical Diseases Institute in Ha Noi for testing, but the results had come back negative for A/N5N6.

MARD reported that no new sick or dead poultry had been reported in the area on Sunday, and the infected birds had already been destroyed. The province has provided 10,000 doses of vaccine for poultry flocks in Nghia Thuan Commune and high risk areas. — VNS

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