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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Malaysia : No sign of A (H5N1), but take precautions

Via The Star :

" Bird samples collected by the Veterinary Services Department confirm there is no abnormal Influenza A (H5N1) infection but people should still practise a high level of hygiene.

“We urge people to wash their hands regularly with water and soap and sanitizer, especially after coughing and sneezing,” said Health director-general Datuk Dr Hasan Abdul Rahman.

He said the monitoring of 507 public and private health facilities throughout the country showed there was no human Influenza A (H5N1), a disease that could spread from birds to humans.

“The Ministry is ready to face any pandemic influenza through our National Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Plan which has been in place since 2006,” he said in a press statement yesterday.

Last week the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) reported that countries should “heighten readiness and surveillance against a possible major resurgence” of the virus in view of a mutated H5N1 strain which had hit China and Vietnam recently.

Dr Hasan said up to Aug 26, the World Health Organisation reported 49 cases of H5N1 (25 deaths) in four countries - 32 in Egypt (12 deaths), eight in Cambodia (eight deaths), seven in Indonesia (five deaths) and two in Bangladesh (no deaths)."

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