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Vietnam reports additional bird flu patient
www.chinaview.cn 2005-02-02 10:53:58

    HANOI, Feb. 2 (Xinhuanet) -- Vietnam reported a 24-year-old man from capital Hanoi, who was hospitalized on Jan. 25, was infected with the bird flu virus H5N1, raising the total number of bird flu infections in the country since late December 2004 to 17, a local doctor told Xinhua on Wednesday.

A Vietnamese poultry vendor carries ducks in Hanoi February 1. Vietnam reported a 24-year-old man from capital Hanoi, who was hospitalized on Jan. 25, was infected with the bird flu virus H5N1, raising the total number of bird flu infections in the country since late December 2004 to 17.

A Vietnamese poultry vendor carries ducks in Hanoi February 1. (Reuters)
    
"According to initial testing by the National Hygiene and Epidemiology Institute, samples from our 24-year-old patient were tested positive to H5N1. However, we have yet to receive the result in written document," said Nguyen Hong Ha, head of the treatment team from the Hanoi-based Tropical Disease Institute.

    The man, who needed respiratory assistance after being admitted to the Tropical Disease Institute, is now recovering rapidly. The institute is treating a total of nine patients, including three H5N1 carriers. Two carriers are scheduled to be discharged on Feb.7, local doctors said, noting that six suspected cases are waiting for testing results from the National Hygiene and Epidemiology Institute.

    The European Commission, on Tuesday, pledged to offer Vietnam 600,000 euros (nearly 788,000 US dollars) for the country's purchase of first-aid and experiment equipment to deal with human bird flu infections.

    Ho Chi Minh City plans to exempt hospital fees for bird flu victims, since daily treatment costs each patient up to 2-3 million Vietnamese dong (127-191 dollars). In a move to curb the spread of bird flu, the municipal authorities have already decided to stop raising fowls, including fighting cocks, in its urban districts from Feb. 6, and to halt the raising of ducks city-wide for one year from Feb. 7 after turning live ducks into frozen meat and culling affected ones.

    Bird flu, since January, has stricken 33 out of 64 cities and provinces in Vietnam, killing and leading to the forced culling of nearly 1.2 million poultry, according to the country's Department of Animal Health. The disease has hit 17 local people, of whom 12 have died, since late December 2004.

    On Tuesday, a virologist from the Pasteur Institute in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City told Xinhua that a 25-year old Cambodian woman, who died on Jan. 30 in Vietnam, was infected with H5N1. The woman, who lived in Cambodia's Kampot province adjacent to Vietnam's southern Kien Giang province, was admitted to the provincial hospital of Kien Giang on Jan. 28. Enditem

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