Emergencies preparedness, response

Avian influenza – situation in China

1 March 2007

The Ministry of Health in China has reported one case of human infection with the H5N1 avian influenza virus.

The case is a 44-year-old woman from Jian'ou county, Fujian province. She became ill with fever and pneumonia on 18 February and was hospitalized on 22 February where she remains in critical condition. The case was laboratory confirmed by the Fujian provincial laboratory on 26 February and by the national laboratory the next day.

Information provided to WHO indicates that she is a farmer who kept birds in her back yard and was possibly exposed to sick birds. An investigation is under way to determine if this exposure was the source of her infection. Close contacts have been placed under medical observation.

Of the 23 cases confirmed to date in China, 14 have been fatal.