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No need so far to restrict trips to China because of bird flu: adviser

January 23, 2014, 19:31 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, January 23. /ITAR-TASS/. The situation with avian influenza in China in under control and there is no need to restrict travels to China for Russian nationals, Russia’s former chief sanitary doctor and now an adviser to the prime minister, Gennady Onishchenko, said on Thursday.

“So far there is no need to restrict travels to China,” he said, however cautioning people against trips without a necessity. ”There have been no international requirements to restrict trips,” he added.

Onishchenko also noted a need for vaccination and timely medical treatment. “As for professionals, a thorough monitoring of illness frequency is needed as well as an exchange of information, first of all with China,” the adviser said.

On Thursday, Russia’s Rospotrebnadzor consumer rights watchdog circulated information about the situation with bird flu in China and urged people to observe preventive measures while on a visit to China.

Its report said “217 cases of human infections with avian influenza H7N9 virus have been fixed since first reports, and 57 people have died”.

People get infected in contacts with live birds, but one case was registered when the virus was passed between humans in a nursing process, Rospotrebnadzor said.

According to the Chinese Healthcare Ministry, 28 human cases of avian influenza have been registered this year in five provinces of the country. “A growing demand for live poultry is expected in China ahead of Spring Festival, and new cases of human infection with the H7N9 strain are forecasted,” the report said.

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