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Ciptapangan Visitor
Indonesia Confirms 75th Case of Human Bird Flu Infection
posted by admin on 09/01/07

Jan. 7 (Bloomberg) -- A 14-year-old boy tested positive for bird flu in Indonesia, marking the country's first case in almost two months and its 75th overall, a Health Ministry official said.

The boy is being treated at Persahabatan Hospital in Jakarta after showing flu-like symptoms on Jan. 1, Muhammad Nadirin, an official at the Health Ministry's avian flu information center, said in a telephone interview today.

``We received a report that he had contact with a dead duck,'' Nadirin said. ``We're launching a full investigation in his neighborhood in west Jakarta.''

Almost all human H5N1 cases have been linked to close contact with sick or dead birds, such as children playing with them or adults butchering them or plucking feathers, according to the World Health Organization.

The virus is known to have infected 261 people in 10 countries since 2003, killing 157 people of them, the Geneva- based WHO said Dec. 27 in its Web site. At least 57 people have been killed by the H5N1 bird flu virus in Indonesia, more than any other country.

The Southeast Asian nation has not reported avian flu cases in humans since Nov. 28, when a 35-year-old woman died from the H5N1 virus strain.

New infections provide more chances for the virus to mutate into a lethal pandemic form, such as one in 1918 that killed as many as 50 million people. In most H5N1 vases, severe respiratory disease, including pneumonia, is the main symptom.

To contact the reporter on this story: Karima Anjani in Jakarta at kanjani@bloomberg.net

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