Rare H5N6 Strain of Bird Flu kills woman in China; Read on to know all about this virus – News Healthcare

    Rare H5N6 Strain of Bird Flu kills woman in China; Read on to know all about this virus – News Healthcare

    A 33-year-old woman has died three weeks after getting infected with H5N6 strain of bird flu in China. According to media reports, she caught the rare form of the dangerous disease in the city of Bazhong, in Sichuan province, shortly after visiting a poultry market.

    Reportedly, the H5N6 strain is considered to be the most deadly, with a mortality rate of 39 per cent.

    According to NHS UK, Bird flu, or avian flu, is an infectious type of influenza that spreads among birds. In rare cases, it can affect humans. There are lots of different strains of bird flu virus. Most of them don’t infect humans. But 4 strains have caused concern in recent years:

    • H5N1 (since 1997)
    • H7N9 (since 2013)
    • H5N6 (since 2014)
    • H5N8 (since 2016)

    According to a report by Metro, the strain has infected a large number of people in China in recent years. In the last decade, 88 cases of H5N6 have been reported from across the world. Of those, 87 were in mainland China, according to a report released on Tuesday by Hong Kong’s Centre for Health Protection.

    Human infections with bird flu viruses can happen when virus gets into a person’s eyes, nose or mouth, or is inhaled, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    “The rise in the number of reported human cases of an H5N6 infection may reflect the continued circulation of the virus in birds, and enhanced surveillance system and diagnostic capacity as a direct outcome of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” an official of the World Health Organisation (WHO) said as quoted by Metro.

    World Organisation for Animal Health (WOAH), the intergovernmental organisation that routinely releases information on animal diseases, H5N6 has only been detected in Asia in the last four years. Since 2014, sporadic human infections with avian influenza A(H5N6) viruses have been reported almost exclusively from China. Other avian influenza viruses have resulted in sporadic human infections, WHO maintains.

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