MANILA, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- The Philippines reported on Friday its first outbreak of bird flu in a poultry farm in Pampanga, a province in the Philippine main Luzon island.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol said he has ordered the slaughtering of 400,000 birds to contain the spread of the poultry disease. Also, he said he has ordered the halt of transport of poultry from Luzon to other parts of the country for now.
Pinol said at least 38,000 chickens have died of the Avian influenza Type A Subtype H5 in San Luis town in Pampanga, north of Manila.
"We will cull all 400,000 birds within the 1 km area. We don't want diseases to spread," Pinol told reporters.
He said the government has not detected any case of human transmission so far in the province north of Manila.
Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial said in a statement that the Department of Agriculture (DA) is continuing its investigation on the outbreak. "It is still under investigation by the DA," she told the media.
"Cross infection to human have (been) minimal but fatal," she said.
Nevertheless, she advised Filipinos "to take flu precautions" including covering the nose when sneezing and coughing, and washing the hands often.
"Get enough rest and sleep. Do not go near wild birds or go to farms with fowls. If you have flu symptoms that last longer than three days or feel very weak, see doctor or go to the nearest hospital for testing if it's bird flu," Ubial said.