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Now An Outbreak Of A Highly Pathogenic Strain Of H5N1 Bird Flu Has Hit China's Hunan

The news comes amidst the the rapidly spreading Wuhan coronavirus outbreak.

Cover image via Simon Song/SCMP & Thailand Medical News

An outbreak of a "highly pathogenic" strain of H5N1 bird flu has been reported in China's Hunan province yesterday, 1 February

According to the Information Office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs in China, the outbreak of the H5N1 influenza virus occurred at a farm in Shuangqing district of Shaoyang city in Hunan.

A Reuters' report said that the case occurred on the farm with 7,850 chickens. Of which, 4,500 have died of the bird flu. And local authorities have culled 17,828 poultry following the outbreak.

Image via SCMP

So far, there has been no reported cases of any person being infected with the deadly H5N1 bird flu in Hunan province

First detected in 1996 in geese in China, the H5N1 is especially deadly for poultry.

The H5N1 avian flu virus, commonly known as avian influenza or bird flu, causes severe respiratory disease in birds and can be transmitted to humans.

From 2003 to January 2020, there have been a total of 861 confirmed human cases worldwide. Of which, 455 people were killed, according to statistics released by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

"The virus does not infect humans easily, and spread from person to person appears to be unusual. There is no evidence that the disease can be spread to people through properly prepared and thoroughly cooked food," the specialised agency of the United Nations mentioned on its website.

However, there have been less and less reported outbreaks of avian influenza since 2006, when 65 outbreaks were reported, followed by 55 in 2007, and 11 in 2008 in five countries.

The Hunan H5N1 outbreak comes amidst the rapidly spreading Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, which has so far killed 304 people in China

Earlier today, the Department of Health in the Philippines said that a Chinese male from Wuhan has died after being infected from the novel coronavirus, reported Malaysiakini.

The death of the Chinese national in the Philippines is the first death reported outside of China.

As of today, 2 February, there are 14,568 confirmed cases of infected victims globally.

Image via Simon Song/SCMP

A new study has revealed that the majority of the victims were men:

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