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Coordinated efforts planned to prevent H7N9

Updated: Feb 25,2017 7:28 AM

The State Council executive meeting on Feb 22 asked local governments to coordinate in preventing the H7N9 avian bird flu, publishing information in a timely manner, and strengthening monitoring and early warnings.

To protect people’s health, new modes will be promoted regarding poultry feeding, slaughtering, logistics, and sales, according to the State Council.

Since January, H7N9 infections have been reported in 16 provinces, and data indicated the deadly disease had spread earlier this year compared with previous years, and infections also increased.

So far, there is no evidence that H7N9 can be transmitted among people, and sustained human-to-human infections have not been reported, according to Shu Yuelong, head of the National Influenza Center.

Contact with infected poultry or exposure to poultry markets are major risks for H7N9 infections, he said.

It is crucial to take curbing measures in places where the virus might transmit, and the State Council executive meeting stressed that efforts should be made to monitor poultry farms and markets, and cull infected poultry.

Local governments should close poultry markets in cities and counties where the flu has been reported and carry out sterilization and necessary culling, according to the National Health and Family Planning Commission.

The commission will also enhance training of local medical staff to promote early detection.

The Ministry of Agriculture also stressed that efforts will be made to strengthen monitoring and study of H7N9.