Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

Child clear of bird flu following outbreak in Turkey

A fourth child who was hospitalised after a bird flu outbreak in south-eastern

Turkey has tested negative for the virus, the country's health ministry

announced today.

Two adults and another child from the area who were suffering from flu

symptoms remained hospitalised as a precaution, the government-run Anatolia news

agency said.

About 170 domestic fowl died in the south-eastern village of Bogazkoy last

week, and tests on Friday confirmed the birds were infected with the H5N1 strain

of the virus.

Tests showed yesterday that three other children from the same village did not

have the virus. The remaining three people, all from Bogazkoy, were still

undergoing tests at a hospital in the south-eastern city of Diyarbakir.

Authorities have quarantined three villages and culled at least 1,650 birds

since the outbreak in Batman province.

Experts worry the H5N1 strain, which remains hard for people to catch, will

mutate into a form that spreads easily among humans, potentially sparking a

pandemic. So far, most human cases have been traced to direct contact with sick

birds.

During an H5N1 outbreak in Turkey in January 2006, 12 people were infected and

four of them died.

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