TODAY.AZ / Society

Human-to-human transmission of bird flu may break out

17 September 2006 [01:56] - TODAY.AZ
Azerbaijan's Health Ministry, US Agency of International Development (USAID) and the International Medical Corps today organized a joint media workshop for journalists.

The goal is to provide media representatives with detailed information on avian influenza and show ways how to make public such news.

The Republic Anti-Plague Station deputy director Faig Mammadzadeh addressing the event said bird flu virus was found in Hong Kong first in 1997. Six of the 18 infected patients died from this virus.

"New wave of this disease started in 2003, which still continues. 248 people have contracted avian flu since 2003 137 of which died," he said.

Mammadzadeh said there is risk of outbreak of human-to-human transmission of bird flu. "H5N1 is in permanent mutation. The virus might be contracted from human beings too. The trouble is this form of bird flu has no treatment-vaccine. In this case, millions of people may die from the disease. If there is mass transmission, there might be lack of medications. People should be prepared to protect themselves from the virus," he said.

Stressing the importance of Azerbaijan's being prepared for that, Mammadzadeh said precautions are being implemented against the spread of avian influenza.

Hot line will operate in the county to raise awareness on bird flu in October.


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