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Russian specialists study new strain of bird flu: chief sanitary medic

May 27, 2013, 18:19 UTC+3
The chief sanitary medic also dwelt on the situation with novel coronavirus
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MOSCOW, May 27 (Itar-Tass) - Specialists from the Rospotrebnadzor consumer rights watchdog continue studying a new strain of H7N9 bird flu received from China, its head Gennady Onishchenko told Tass on Monday.

They are to ascertain its nature and to assess how quickly it can spread between humans, he told Itar-Tass.

The Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission has not informed the World Health Organization (WHO) about any new confirmed cases (of bird flu in humans) after May 8,” the chief sanitary doctor informed. “Thus as of today, 131 cases have been confirmed by lab tests, and 36 people have died,” the Rospotrebnadzor head said.

Rospotrebnadzor is actively working to bar bird flu from the Russian territory. “We are examining samples from wild birds, in particular we have studied 26 samples from the Khabarovsk region, 30 from Irkutsk, 15 from Sakhalin, 30 from Krasnoyarsk, 20 from the Amur region, 55 from Sakha (Yakutia), 35 from Buryatia and 96 from the Omsk region,” he said. “Tests were negative in samples received from the Khabarovsk, Krasnoyarsk, Amur and Irkutsk regions,” he stated. Specialists continue lab tests on the other samples.

The chief sanitary medic also dwelt on the situation with novel coronavirus. “According to the WHO, there are 44 confirmed cases of coronavirus around the world, and 22 of them - exactly the half, are fatalities,” he stressed. Thirty-one people fell ill in Saudi Arabia, and 16 died, two patients in Qatar have recovered, and two people died in Jordan. Two of three people infected in Great Britain have also died. Besides, one death was registered in the United Arab Emirates, and two people undergo medical treatment in France. Three people were infected in Tunisia, and one of them died.

“At the present time, the WHO assesses the situation as serious, spreading worldwide but not preventing international trips, which means the WHO does not recommend to close borders,” Onishchenko said.

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