Published On: Wed, Apr 10th, 2024

Bird flu fears surge as student dies from strain already in UK after developing cough | World | News

A student has died just days after developing a cough that was being caused by a bird flu.  It was a highly pathogenic strain of the virus already detected in the UK and the US. 

The 21-year-old from Vietnam is confirmed to have been infected with avian flu strain H5N1. 

While its most widespread targets are birds, the illness can be transferred to mammals and humans.

People who had been in close contact with the student are being “monitored daily” in case they fall ill.  

READ NEXT: Bird Flu warning as expert says roadmap to human infection can lead to nightmare

The RSPCA and Animal and Plant Health Agency have issued advice urging people to avoid animal droppings and dead birds due to the risk of avian influenza, or bird flu. This virus can infect humans and cause severe disease, although it is rare.

The G5N1 subtype is particularly concerning as it poses a potential pandemic threat. In a tragic incident in February, a young boy succumbed to bird flu, with his older brother also testing positive for the virus.

Bird flu, which occasionally jumps to humans – especially those in close contact with poultry – has a terrifying death rate that can reach up to 50 percent.

The nine year old boy passed away in the northeastern province of Kratie in Cambodia, as reported by the country’s health ministry. Last year, four deaths from bird flu were reported in Cambodia, where live chickens are often purchased at markets and backyard farms are still prevalent.

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