Monday, January 8, 2007

Vietnam conducts anti-bird flu rehearsal

Vietnam on Sunday implemented a rehearsal on combating potential bird flu outbreaks among people in northern Quang Ninh province, Vietnam News Agency reported.

Over 700 people in the province tried to deal with a mock situation, in which four members in a family are infected with bird flu virus strain H5N1, and 80 people from 60 other households nearby also contract the disease, some of them contacted with dead fowls five days before.

Specifically, they tried to treat bird flu patients, stamp out the outbreaks, and conduct some preventive measures.

Vietnam has detected 93 bird flu patients, including 42 fatalities, in 32 localities, the country's Health Ministry said on Sunday, noting that it has seen no new human cases of infections since mid-November 2005.

Bird flu has, since December 2006, hit 33 communes in 15 districts in the three provinces of Ca Mau, Bac Lieu and Hau Giang, according to the Department of Animal Health under the Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development on Sunday. It has killed some 6,000 poultry, and led to the forced culling of nearly23,000 others, mainly ducks and chickens.

Bird flu outbreaks, starting in Vietnam in December 2003, have killed and led to the forced culling of dozens of millions of fowls in the country.

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