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China H7N9 total for the season rises to four

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    Posted: November 12 2015 at 6:12am

China H7N9 total for the season rises to four

China has acknowledged two more H7N9 avian flu infections, both of which occurred in October, increasing the total in the early phase of what appears to be a fourth wave of infections to four. The cases, reported by China's National Health and Family Commission, were noted in a statement today from Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP).

The agency said the cases were in Zhejiang province and involved a 62-year-old woman from Shengzhou and a 51-year-old woman who works as a farmer in Hangzhou. Both had been exposed to poultry and are in serious condition.

A Hong Kong health department spokesman said in the statement that, based on earlier seasonal patterns, it's likely that avian influenza activity will increase in the coming winter months, requiring increased vigilance. In mid October the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said that a fourth wave of H7N9 began in early October after two cases were reported in Zhejiang province, China's first since July.

The number of infections so far this season coincides with a running tally kept by ***********, an infectious disease news message board. *********** noted that the 62-year-old woman's illness was first reported in early October in a Chinese media report, a Taiwan government report, and a city government announcement.

According to ***********' count, the global H7N9 total is 689 cases since the virus was first detected in China in March 2013.
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