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Vietnam reports one more bird flu case
Updated: 2005-01-24 10:26

A 36-year-old man from Vietnam's northern Thai Binh province has just been found to have contracted bird flu virus H5N1, raising the number of bird flu infections in the country to nine.

Farmers watch a culling pit where thounsands of their sick chickens are destroyed in the southern province of Long An. Bird flu has claimed two more victims in Vietnam, alarming authorities and international experts as the toll from the disease mounts, with five deaths announced in the past four days. [AFP]

Samples from the patient named Hung, who is receiving treatment at the Tropical Disease Institute in Hanoi, were tested positive to H5N1, local newspaper Pioneer on Monday quoted Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Health Tran Chi Liem as saying.

Earlier, samples from Hung's two brothers were also tested positive to the virus. The tests were made by the National Hygiene and Epidemiology Institute. The three brothers ate duck and a dish made from duck's raw blood at a local market on Dec. 29, 2004, before exhibiting symptoms of bird flu.

The 47-year-old brother named Nguyen Huu Viet died on Jan. 9 at the Tropical Disease Institute in Hanoi. The 42-year-old brother named Nguyen Thanh Hung, who had spent some time looking after his elder brother, was admitted to the institute on Jan. 13. The 36- year-old brother received medical checkups at the institute last week.

Nguyen Thanh Hung, who lives in Hanoi, and his younger brother, who lives in Thai Binh, now are under treatment at the institute. They are in stable health conditions.

Among the nine cases of bird flu infection, seven, all of whom were from the southern region, died. The first case amid the recent outbreak of bird flu in Vietnam was reported on Dec. 28, 2004. On Jan. 19, Nguyen Thanh Hung was reported as the first bird flu victim in the northern region.

Since January, bird flu has stricken 404 communes of 25 cities and provinces nationwide, killing and leading to the forced culling of more than 557,600 fowls, according to the Department of Animal Health.

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