HANOI, Sept. 22 (Xinhuanet) -- A 35-year-old man from Vietnam's southern Ben Tre province died of bird flu, raising the total fatal cases in the country to 21 since early this year, the local newspaper Labor reported Thursday.
The man named Phan Van Lu from the Ba Tri district was infected with the virus strain H5N1. He died at a provincial hospital on July 31, one day after being hospitalized, Vietnam's Health Ministry has confirmed.
The man slaughtered two dead chickens for meal on July 25. He was the first patient in Ben Tre to die of bird flu.
The ministry also announced that a total of 64 local people from 25 localities had been infected with bird flu since early this year, including the deaths.
To prevent new bird flu outbreaks, Vietnam is conducting bird flu vaccination among fowls in 33 out of 64 cities and provinces. Under a recent instruction of the Vietnamese government, the vaccination among fowls, mainly chickens and ducks, must be completed by late November at the latest.
The government urged relevant ministries to rapidly cull infected fowls, isolate bird flu outbreaks, and forbid the transport of poultry as well as poultry products out of affected areas, if the disease is spotted in any localities.
According to local veterinary agencies, up to 70 percent of waterfowls in the southern Mekong delta have been recently tested positive to H5N1. Enditem