Combodia Fights the Bird Flu virus

Here are three video news bulletins from the Apsara News Cambodia, telling us about the efforts of the Government of Cambodia, Border authorities, in their fight against the H5N1 virus.
 Video 1. 
Video 2.
Video 3.

Now a Human Victim of Bird Flu in India?

VIA Statesman News Service

BALURGHAT. Jan, 31: Panic broke out at Mangalpur More, Jogomaya Para in Balurghat today, over the illness of a 17-year-old girl.
The victim, Ms Priyanka Malakar has been admitted to the Balurghat Hospital with breathing trouble, high fever and rashes all over her body her body.
Neighbours fear that the girl has fallen a victim to Bird Flu but the doctors are still not certain about it.
Admitting the matter, the CMOH, South Dinajpur Mr BB Mahapatra said that the symptoms were similar to human flu and measles.
 “Nothing can be said for certain at this point. We are sending her blood samples for tests to Bhopal. She would be under observation till the test results reach us,” the CMOH, said.
Doctors treating the victim refused to comment on the matter, which has stoked further imagination and rumour.
The CMOH’s version has not been able to convince the Mangalpur residents, who suspect the girl has been contaminated with avian flu.
“Since we stay close to the victim’s house, people are avoiding us,” lamented Priyanka’s next door neighbours Mrs Swagata Saha and Mrs Bandana Guha.
The neighbours alleged that the culling teams engaged by the district administration had not visited their area although almost every house in that area had some chickens or ducks.
The South Dinajpur district magistrate Mr Swapan Chatterjee, said that he had not been informed of the development. He was also unhappy to learn that culling teams were yet to visit the Jogomaya Para area. The DM assured to look into the matter.

Mini Lakes Of Egg Yolk as Bird Flu Panic Grows.

In a clear display of panic, hundreds of thousands of Eggs are being destroyed in the state of West Bengal in India, creating mini lakes of rapidly decaying egg yolk, in hastily dug ditches.
Meanwhile India’s worst outbreak of bird flu spread as health authorities battled to stop it reaching the densely populated city of Kolkata amid heavy rain that hampered culling efforts.
–                                                                                                                                    –
Authorities reported the disease had affected two more districts, bringing the number hit by avian flu to 12 out of West Bengal state’s total of 19.The fear of the H5N1 virus is spreading to other parts of India as well.–                                                                                                                                               –                                                                                   –
In neighbouring Bangladesh from where the Indian outbreak is believed to have spread, health teams slaughtered a large number of birds in a border area amid a worsening bird flu situation across the country.
Some 2,646 chickens, ducks and pigeons were culled and 1,140 eggs destroyed in Bangladesh’s southern Patuakhali district, about 160 km south of capital Dhaka Thursday night after detection of avian influenza.
There are also reports of a large number of Crows dying of the H5N1 virus in Patuakhali in southern Bangladesh.
—                                                                                                                                                                                  –

The deadly bird flu virus has also killed 30 chickens in Thailand, marking the second outbreak of bird flu in 10 months, livestock officials said yesterday.

This is the second outbreak of bird flu in Thailand since March 18, 2007.
—                                                                                                                                                                            –
The World Health Organization (WHO) today confirmed that a 34-year-old man from Vietnam has died of H5N1 avian influenza.
While in Indonesia, a 30-year-old man has died of bird flu, the health ministry said Thursday, bringing the toll to 98 in the nation worst hit by the H5N1 virus.
–                                                                                                                                        –
In the UK, a sixth swan from a bird sanctuary has tested positive for avian flu, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) confirmed.The news comes after restrictions on the movement of poultry or other captive birds in the Wild Bird Monitoring Area around Abbotsbury Swannery in Dorset, England were lifted at 3pm on Friday.-                                                                                                                                                    –The Bird Flu Virus has spread to 15 countries since the beginning of this year!

Bird Flu Panic In India

The Bird Flu virus is creating a growing sense of panic in India.
For the first time, there is a real sense of fear of the killer virus, not only in the effected states of Bengal and Bihar but all over India.
 The Times Of India Editorial put it this way- An Excerpt:
More than 6,00,000 eggs are piling up in Namakkal, the poultry capital of Tamil Nadu, even as egg prices slide with the fall in demand.
Thousands of broiler chickens are waiting in the wings as poultry entrepreneurs pray for importers to resume buying. The avian flu outbreak in West Bengal has simply devastated the poultry farmer in Tamil Nadu — setting the industry back by over Rs 500 crore — though the distance between the two states is thousands of kilometres and there is absolutely no sign of the virus in the south. Meanwhile, the government of West Bengal — where the H5N1 flu virus has now infected poultry in half the state — is unable to contain the outbreak.

It is wasting precious time sparring with the Centre, which has accused the state government of not doing enough on time.
The West Bengal government must act quickly to contain the outbreak, before it spreads to neighbouring states. Five persons have been quarantined in West Bengal as they have shown symptoms of avian flu, but as yet there are no confirmed cases.

Right now the impact on the poultry industry is much more disconcerting. It is losing out on huge export orders to countries in the Gulf among others. Fear of a possible pandemic is turning consumers away from chicken and eggs.
This is a pity since they are a relatively affordable source of protein. Poultry exporters say that they want the central government to divide the country zone-wise so that there is a clear understanding of which parts are affected and which are not. Zoning would help producers label their products.

This proposal should be implemented. Zoning and labelling would help revive exports somewhat. The World Health Organisation says this is the worst outbreak of H5N1 virus in India till date.
But the infrastructure and laboratory facilities to enable documentation, testing, detection and research in both animal/bird and human samples are inadequate.

2008 the year of the Flu Pandemic?

I have been following the H5N1 virus for a while now.
Since the year 2003, the bird flu virus repeatedly seems to appeare out of no where, for no visible reason, mostly in a remote (from the point of view of the west) country in the far east and then, after a short period of local panic, the virus disappears, again for no provable reason.
We have gotten used to this peak-a-boo game, with the deadliest of potential dangers to mankind to such an extent, that there are “journalists” taking bets against the chance of a pandemic-in-our-time.
There are others who think that bird flu is a social network tool and have regular get together shindings and a jolly good knees-up.
This year is different however.
The year started with the H5N1 virus ruling the roost, so to speak, in 10 countries just in the first 15 days of the year!
This time the outbreaks of the virus seem to be spreading much faster over a much wider area.
Portugal, Dominica, Israel, Benin, Vietnam, China, West Bengal in India, Bangladesh and Myanmar have all been hit by outbreaks.
On Wednesday, a fourth swan died of the H5N1 virus in the Abbotsbury reserve in Dorset, southern England.
So can this be the year that the dreaded pandemic visits mankind once again?
With the US Presidential election in full swing, will any one pay attention to what could be a vast shadow creeping silently over all of us?
Come to think of it, did any of the Presidential Candidates mention bird flu in any of the debates?
Is it even politically correct to mention the bird flu virus these days?
I mean would the color of the poultry and the birds (other than the totally white British swans) come into play?

Kill the Birds & Save the World

Here is a blood thirsty little game for you for the new year, from Galaxy Graphics.
You have to kill the birds (chickens actually) and stop the Bird Flu traveling from Thailand to the UK, via China and Turkey! 
Here is the link to the game:

Bird Flu from the Mother-In-Law

tourist sparked a bird flu panic at the New Year celebrations at one of the hotels in Abu Dhabi.
According to a statement released by the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD), “The visitor caused a state of panic and confusion as he told the management of the hotel that he suffered from avian influenza,”.
The tourist claimed that the Bird Flu infection was transmitted to him from his mother-in-law.
Warning hotel employees from coming near him, the visitor, who came to the country few days back, said he needed urgent medical attention.
But then, to make matters worse, he refused to be examined by a doctor from a private hospital who was called in for help by the hotel management, saying that he did not wish to transmit the disease to anyone.
The hotel authorities then called the police who contacted the National Committee for Emergency Response to Bird flu, headed by the EAD.Specialist physicians from the Department of Preventive Medicine rushed to the hotel, accompanied by a team of experts. Entry and exit to the hotel were blocked by the authorities.

At the end of clinical tests, the man was found to be intoxicated and not suffering from any form of disease and certainly not suffering from avian influenza!

Finally, results of tests and clinical examinations proved that the man was just intoxicated.
Almost an hour later, public was allowed to enter the hotel. However, the floor the man stayed was kept isolated.
Map of Abu Dhabi