An Indonesian man has reportedly succumbed to bird flu infection, marking the third time this week that a bird flu-related death has been reported. The 47-year-old man from Indonesia’s Banten province on the western tip of the island of Java has become the latest human fatality from avian influenza, the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) has reported.
According to the United Natons, Indonesian health officials have confirmed that the man from the province’s Tangerang District died last week as a result of contracting the H5N1 virus – responsible for outbreaks of bird flu around the world in recent years.
“So far, 93 of the 115 confirmed bird flu cases in Indonesia have been fatal, according to a statement from WHO. The South-East Asian archipelago is one of six countries where the virus is still enzootic, which means it is continuously present and being passed between poultry,” UN said in a release.
Earlier this week, two Pakistanis, who lived close to Pakistan’s “poultry belt,” died in a fresh outbreak of avian influenza. According to a release from the UN, Pakistani health officials informed WHO of eight suspected human cases of infection with the H5N1 virus – the virus responsible for outbreaks of bird flu around the world in recent years – in the area around the city of Peshawar.
According to the UN, the outbreak in humans was detected after a series of culling operations in the area in response to an outbreak of the virus in local poultry. Samples taken by health officials have tested positive in the national laboratory and are now being referred to a WHO laboratory for further analysis.
“The agency is helping Pakistani health officials conduct epidemiological investigations and assess the current surveillance, prevention and control measures in place to see whether they need tightening or adjusting.
“Pakistan has been hit by multiple outbreaks of bird flu in its domestic poultry population since last year, while this year there has also been outbreaks in wild birds.
WHO officials are also assisting local health authorities in Myanmar, where a seven-year-old girl from Shan State (East) has recovered after developing symptoms of fevers and headaches last month.