H5N1 News: Suspected Outbreak Of H5N1 Avian Flu Virus Among Humans Being Investigated In South Kalimantan, Indonesia
: The Indonesian Ministry of Health is investigating a suspected outbreak of H5N1 bird flu among local citizens in South Kalimantan after local authorities from the province reported that not only poultry in farms and markets were dying but a few people were stricken by a unknown respiratory disease with one already hospitalized due to severity.
Initially, a bird flu outbreak was reported to the Ministry of Agriculture about 6 days ago after locals in the province found many dead wild birds and also dead chickens in farms and markets.
Indonesian authorities had responded quickly to warn locals about safety precautions and methods to handle and dispose dead animals found in the province.
However about three days ago, local H5N1 News
coverages and reports on social media claimed that a few individuals in the province had developed high fevers, severe body pains and coughs. One was individual has been reported hospitalized in Tabalong regency.
Meanwhile, Budi Gunadi Sadikin, the Indonesian Health Minister stressed that the media and locals should not jump into any conclusions till proper laboratory diagnostics are conducted and test results known.
He said that without any scientific proof that the reported sick in South Kalimantan are indeed infected with the H5N1 Avian Flu Virus, it would be premature to claim that in connection bird flu have spread to humans in the province.
He told media, "The cases of bird flu transmission to humans must be proven based on scientific data and evidence. We have to oversee the surveillance of poultry and check how many sudden death cases are occurring in birds.”
He called on research teams to collect blood samples at the earliest for testing through the genome sequencing method in a bid to check the type of virus variant in the infected patients.
He added, &
quot;If it turns out that the virus is H5N1, then it is bird flu with contamination from animals or poultry. Our surveillance team is also checking the condition of the poultry in that area.”
He also noted that his ministry has collaborated with the Agriculture Ministry regarding surveillance efforts in South Kalimantan.
Many critics are however asking as to why despite reports about dead chickens and birds in the province since late February and also reports of individuals getting sick by a strange respiratory illness about a week ago, the Ministry and other government agencies have been slow to respond and get relevant tests done with quick results.
Till now, there is no test results to even ascertain as to what is causing the deaths of thousands of birds and poultry in the province let alone test results from the infected locals.
The H5N1 Avian Flu has been wreaking havoc globally, infecting and killing millions of birds, poultry, various mammals and to date, it seems that no country has been spread from it despite many governments either trying to downplay or conceal the situation.
Despite claims by many health agencies and so called ‘experts’ around the world that human-to-human transmissions of H5N1 Avain Flu virus have not occurred yet, there is a strong possibility considering the current kinetics of the outbreak in millions of animals across the world, that it has already began but either that it has not been detected or that certain agencies are concealing the cases either to prevent panic or are using these cases to conduct clandestine studies involving vaccines, antivirals and even ‘gain of function’ research!
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