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The Taiwan Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Friday the detection of H9N2 avian influenza in a domestic poultry farm. This is the first time this subtype of virus was detected in a poultry farm in the country.

Image/Robert Herriman

The CDC pointed out that for the domestic poultry farms where the H9N2 subtype virus was detected, the health unit has assisted the personnel involved in culling and clearing the farms to assist them in putting on and taking off their personal protective equipment, and has compiled a list and carried out health checks as soon as possible. Prevention and control measures such as status tracking. Currently, there are 20 contact prevention and control personnel and 1 poultry farm personnel. There are 21 people in total, and none of them have flu-like symptoms. In addition, for the contacts of the domestic bird flu epidemic, since January of this year (2023), a total of 695 people (47 cases belonging to 47 cases) of related contacts have been listed in the health management tracking, and no human cases of new type A influenza have been found.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that since 2013, sporadic human cases of H9N2 infection have been continuously reported internationally. So far, at least 97 cases have been reported, of which more than 7 have become young children. There are 8 severe cases and 2 deaths (all with a history of chronic diseases). In Asia, nearly 90% of the cases occurred in China. The latest case was a mild case in Hunan Province, China in November 2022. According to the WHO risk assessment of H9N2 on February 24, 2023, most of the current cases have been exposed to poultry or contaminated environments. As the virus continues to circulate in poultry, sporadic human cases are expected to continue, but current evidence shows that it has not been transmitted from person to person (Human-to-human) ability, the possibility of community transmission is low, but occasional cases of human infection may occur, and close monitoring is required. H9N2 is currently a novel influenza A subtype with “low” disease severity in humans.

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The Department of Disease Control and Prevention reminds that due to the continuous occurrence of domestic poultry epidemics, the respiratory secretions and excreta of poultry infected with avian influenza may contain viruses. Entering the human body, the risk of human exposure and infection increases, and livestock-related workers are urged to wear personal protective equipment during work. In order to prevent the new type A influenza, doctors are urged to ask the TOCC (travel history, occupation history, contact history and group history) of patients with influenza-like patients. If they meet the notification requirements of new type A influenza, they must report as soon as possible . In addition, the public is requested to abide by the principle of “5 Dos and 6 Don’ts”. “5 Dos”: Meat and eggs should be cooked, wash hands thoroughly with soap, if symptoms appear, wear a mask to see a doctor immediately and inform the occupation and contact history, and those who have long-term contact with poultry and livestock Inoculate against influenza, eat a balanced diet, and exercise properly; “6 Do’s”: Do not eat raw poultry eggs or products, do not smuggle or buy meat from unknown sources, do not touch or feed poultry, do not release or discard poultry at will Livestock, do not mix livestock with other livestock, and do not go to places with poor ventilation or crowded places.