Chinese officials say they are battling against a sudden surge in a deadly disease, and international authorities are becoming concerned.
A major disease outbreak in China has authorities rushing to get a handle on it, and dozens of people have died so far. China just reported four more deaths from a strain of bird flu, although they claim the virus’s spread is slowing somewhat.
The H7N9 bird flu has become a big problem in China over the winter, with at least 112 people dying. However, the virus’s spread could continue to slow as China scrambles to shut down live poultry markets, which have been blamed for the disease’s spread.
The World Health Organization says that the risk of human-to-human transmission of H7N9 is quite low, but there has been a significant increase in human cases that have concerned authorities. Officials have recorded about 22 new cases of bird flu in the past week.
The WHO said in a statement: “On 18 February 2017, the National Health and Family Planning Commission of China (NHFPC) reported to WHO the results of genetic sequencing on virus isolates from two previously reported cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus from Guangdong province. Changes at the cleavage site of the HA gene suggestive of being highly pathogenic to poultry was confirmed by the Chinese National Influenza Centre of the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC).”