A teenage girl in Indonesia is infected with the deadly bird flu virus, becoming the 93rd confirmed case in the country worst hit by the disease, a health official said Thursday.
The girl who was identified only as R, was transferred from Carolus Hospital in Central Jakarta to Sulianti Saroso bird flu referral hospital on April 2, 2007, said Ningrum, a staff with the Health Ministry, Thursday.
“The laboratory test has confirmed of H5N1 positive,” Ningrum was quoted by Antara news agency as saying.
JAKARTA (AFP) — A teenage girl in Indonesia is infected with the deadly bird flu virus, becoming the 93rd confirmed case in the country worst hit by the disease, a health official said Thursday.
The 15-year-old lives in the country’s sprawling capital, Jakarta, and is in intensive care in one of the city’s hospitals, a spokesperson from Indonesia’s bird flu information centre said.
“Specimens taken from her have tested positive for the H5N1 virus in two tests,” said the official, referring to the deadly strain that has killed 72 people here.
Meanwhile a 29-year-old man died Wednesday in Solo after showing bird flu symptoms, said Refiono, a doctor from the hospital that treated him. Solo lies about 500 kilometres (300 miles) from the capital.
“Results of tests have yet to be completed but the patient’s body is being treated as a bird flu case,” the doctor told AFP, adding the victim had been in contact with infected chickens.
Most human infections have occurred after contact with sick birds. The government has banned the popular practice of keeping poultry in backyards in Jakarta to try and stop the spread of the disease.
The World Health Organisation says the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu has infected 288 people and killed 170 of them, mostly in Southeast Asia, since 2003.
Scientists say multiple strains of the disease originated in southern China and spread elsewhere.
They worry the virus could mutate into a form easily spread among humans, leading to a global pandemic with the potential to kill millions.
The fear stems from the lessons of past influenza pandemics. One in 1918, just after the end of World War I, killed 20 million people worldwide.
© 2007 AFP Copyright © 2003-2006 Agence France Presse. All rights reserved.
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