January 29, 2023

There are no recorded human cases of avian influenza A (H5N1) in the country, a health official said.

In an online town hall forum, Department of Health Epidemiology Bureau Director Dr. Alethea de Guzman said no bird flu is detected in domestic fowls as the country is at the second stage of the four-tier preparedness and response plan.

Wala pa tayong ni isang confirmed human avian influenza case and we want to be able to retain that status,” she said.

De Guzman made the statement after cases were detected in several countries.

According to the World Health Organization, there are 868 human cases with avian influenza A (H5N1) recorded in 21 countries. Of the tally, 455 patients have died.

The disease affects wild and domestic birds with its most severe strains identified as highly pathogenic avian influenza and includes H5N1 virus.

De Guzman said cases are among individuals who have close contact with infected birds and contaminated materials.

Ecuador reported its first human case of avian influenza – a nine-year-old girl who was presumed to have contact with infected birds on Jan. 7. – PNA