[Source: European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), full PDF document: (LINK). Edited.]
COMMUNICABLE DISEASE THREATS REPORT
Week 5, 27 January-2 February 2013
Influenza A(H5N1) - Multistate (world) - Monitoring human cases
Opening date: 15 June 2005 Latest update: 25 January 2013
On 25 January 2013, WHO reported three confirmed cases of A(H5N1) virus infections in Cambodia. Two of them, a 15-year old girl and a 35 year old man, died. The third patient, an 8 months old baby, has recovered. The three patients came from three different provinces in Cambodia. All three had contact with poultry prior to their onset of illness.
On 29 January 2013, the Cambodian Ministry of Health published a joint press release with WHO confirming that two more cases of avian influenza have tested positive for the A(H5N1) virus. These are the fourth and fifth confirmed cases of avian influenza in Cambodia so far this year. Both the fourth case, a 17-month-old girl from Kampong Speu province and the fifth case, a 9 year old girl from Kampot Province, died. In both cases, there is evidence of recent deaths among poultry in the village.
Since 2005, there have been twenty six cases of A(H5N1) in Cambodia including 23 fatalities. Out of the twenty six confirmed cases, seventeen were children aged under 14 years and seventeen occurred in females.
Hong Kong reported the world's first recorded major outbreak of bird flu among humans in 1997, when six people died. Most human infections are the result of direct contact with infected birds, and countries with large poultry populations in close contact with humans are considered to be most at risk of bird flu outbreaks. ECDC follows the worldwide A(H5N1) situation through epidemic intelligence activities in order to identify significant changes in the epidemiology of the virus. ECDC re-assesses the potential of a changing risk for A(H5N1) to humans on a regular basis.
There are currently no indications that from a human health perspective there is any significant change in the epidemiology associated with any clade or strain of the A(H5N1) virus.
This assessment is based on the absence of sustained human-to-human transmission, and on the observation that there is no apparent change in the size of clusters or reports of chains of infection. However, vigilance for avian influenza in domestic poultry and wild birds in Europe remains important.
WHO is now reporting H5N1 cases on a monthly basis. ECDC will continue monthly reporting in the CDTR to coincide with WHO reporting.
The CDTR includes the A(H5N1) threat this week due to the new reported cases in Cambodia.