CAIRO, May 18 (Xinhua) -- Egypt was praised for constantefforts to contain the spread of fatal bird flu virus which hasclaimed six lives in the most populous Arab country.
The Egyptian health authorities reported on Thursday that a 75-year-old woman died of the deadly H5N1 strain of virus, the sixthhuman bird flu fatality since the outbreak of the deadly diseasein Egypt in February.
The woman from the governorate (province) of Minya, some 220 kmsouth of Cairo, was hospitalized on May 12 after contracting thedeadly virus due to direct contact with backyard poultry.Egypt has so far reported 14 human cases of bird flu, six ofthem have died and the other eight recovered.
Despite the new fatal case, UN experts and the World HealthOrganization (WHO) hailed Egypt's rapid and effective response tobird flu.
David Nabarro, UN System Senior Coordinator for Avian and HumanInfluenza, said on Monday that Egypt's immediate response to birdflu showed that even less-developed countries can cope withlimited outbreaks if they follow guidelines.
Although health experts had worried that Egypt could be hithard by the deadly virus because of its backyard flocks andwidespread poverty, Egypt coped well with its outbreak, Nabarrosaid.
He even introduced Egypt's handling of bird flu as a model tobe followed by other countries, according to an article posted ona website dedicated to the bird flu, which was run by the Egyptianstate information service.
The UN coordinator confirmed Egyptian government's transparencyin dealing with bird flu, the article said.
The WHO was satisfied with Egypt's performance by invitingEgyptian Minister of Health and Population Hatem el-Gabali toshare its experience in fighting bird flu at the 59th annualmeeting of WHO, slated for May 23 in Geneva, according to theofficial MENA news agency.
Egypt reported its first human bird flu case on March 18 afterthe country found the first bird flu case in dead poultry on Feb.17.
According to Egypt's Supreme Committee to Combat Bird Flu, 20out of the country's 26 governorates have found bird flu as Egyptis on a major route for migratory birds.
Beside Egypt, the deadly H5N1 strain has spread to more than 40countries and killed over 110 people worldwide since its latestoutbreak in southeast Asia in late 2003, according to the WHO.Most victims were infected after close contact with sick birds.Enditem(by Lin Jianyang )