Shanghai has stepped up measures to prevent the
potential spread of H5N1 avian influenza among people after a 29-year-old woman
was suspected of dying from the disease in the city.
The city's health department has set up 160 monitoring stations at the fever
clinics, where all the fever patients were required to receive treatment.
In addition, all the hospitals were ordered to take measures, such as
isolating suspicious human cases and strengthening disinfection, and to give
medical workers training on the fatal disease.
Booklets detailing preventative measures have also been handed out to the
"There's no need to panic, but it's necessary to pay close attention to
personal hygiene and try to avoid crowded places," said Zhang Yongxin, a
professor with the Huashan Hospital under the prestigious Fudan University in
The woman, a migrant worker, was suffering from a cough and a fever when she
was admitted to hospital on March 15. She later died of an unidentified type of
pneumonia on Tuesday.
Experts from the city's health department on Wednesday performed multiple
tests and analyses on the case and made a preliminary conclusion that the
pneumonia was probably caused by the highly pathogenic avian influenza virus.
The department said it has already reported the case to the Ministry of
Health, asking experts for a further diagnosis.
If it is confirmed, the case would be the first human infection of the virus
in Shanghai, which has a population of nearly 18 million people.
According to the department, people who have had close contact with the dead
woman are undergoing medical examinations, but no infectious symptoms have been
China has so far confirmed 15 cases of bird flu in humans, including ten
Shanghai last had an outbreak of the disease among poultry in 2004.