Over the past 48 hours we’ve seen Arabic media reports (see here & here) quoting the Egyptian Ministry of Health, raising the number of H5N1 cases for this new year to 17. Although we always prefer official reports, the Egyptian press has proved extremely reliable in recent weeks whenever they quote `Ministry Sources’.
Today the MOH has posted a pair of updates (see below) that confirm that reportage, along with a statement on their weekly Avian Influenza Committee Meeting.
First the statement taking Egypt to 15 cases for the year:
- The first case of a woman, aged 27 years of Monofia, and is still under treatment in hospital Shebin fevers. - the second case of a woman, aged 43 years, and is still under treatment in hospital issued Assiut.
This brings the total number of cases of bird flu in 2015 So far 15 cases of "6 Status healing and 7 cases under treatment, 0.2 deaths", and cases contracted the virus from the provinces: - Eastern - Minia Assiut - Western - Aallakeh - Cairo - Almnovih- Aswan - Asyut.
This second statement adds two more cases, bring us to the 17 cases reported by the media yesterday.
The Ministry of Health and Population in the injury of two cases asserting virus-H5N1 (bird flu): - - the first case of a girl aged three and a half years, from the governorate of Cairo, and is still under treatment in hospital Abbasid Fever. - the second case of a woman, aged 35, from the province of Sohag, and is still under treatment in hospital issued Assiut.
It also announces the Ministry of Health for the death of the case, which had been announced under the incidence of No. 15 heading virus-H5N1, which is the old lady 43 years of Assiut Governorate. This brings the total number of cases of bird flu During 2015 so far 17 cases (6 cases of healing 0.8 cases under treatment, and 3 deaths of 16, 9 and January 2 2015).
Therefore, calls upon the Ministry of Health and Population citizens who deal with poultry immediately go to the nearest hospital for medical service in the case of symptoms of influenza them where to receive the injured bird flu drug Tamiflu within the first 24 hours of the onset of symptoms increases the cure rates of disease and reduces mortality and advises the Ministry of Health of citizens who deal with poultry exercise caution and prudence when dealing with birds, especially by showing them symptoms of sick and need to take preventive measures to prevent infection, such as cover your mouth and nose when dealing with poultry, wash your hands with soap and water after handling birds and not to take children to places of birds breeding or slaughter, as well as the need to separate the birds from the living quarters. Source: Media Center
Billed as a `weekly meeting’, below you find a statement on a proposal to elevate their campaign against the H5N1 virus.
Dr. Adel was attended by Minister of health and population of infection the weekly meeting of the bird flu.
The Minister said that the proposal of the Prime Minister to form a higher Committee for avian influenza, including the Ministers of health, agriculture, environment and local development ", and the number of actors involved, the first session would be chaired by the Minister of agriculture.
He also stressed that the role of the Ministry of health is the activation procedures for the surveillance and tracking the epidemic foci, and the bird flu of important issues in the agenda of the Ministry of health priorities, while adding that there is evidence of negative due to the increase in the number of hot spots and the high incidence, reaching number 15 in the year 2015 and until today, and that the biggest problem lies in the existence of hotbeds of disease has not been detected, as well as negative habits associated with non-vaccinated bird houses.
The Minister noted that the maximum alert was lifted in all sectors and departments, in addition to the full coordination between the sectors involved, particularly preventive medicine and treatment.
He said the Ministry is seeking to raise efficiency in the provinces, especially with the existence of hotbeds of disease, such as "Minya, Sohag-menoufia-conf", pointing out that there is coordination with the World Health Organization and Research Center from American research unit "NAMRO", as well as activating the role of the rural women leaders, and raising awareness of the health care units.
The Minister concluded by that there are some signs of hope in spite of high rates, decreasing mortality from 62.5% in November last year to 13.3% this month.
Source: Media Center
The `hopeful signs’ mentioned at the end of this report – specifically that the mortality has dropped from `62.5% in November last year to 13.3% this month’ - is a bit of statistical slight of hand. Over the full history of H5N1 in Egypt, their mortality rate has run about 35%, roughly half that of the rest of the world.
Also, calculating a new mortality rate based on 17 recent cases , when nearly half (n=8) are still hospitalized, allows for some creative CFR reductions.
The mention of `NAMRO’ refers to America’s Naval Medical Research Unit 3 (NAMRU-3) Cairo, Egypt, which is billed as the `largest DoD overseas laboratory, with biosafety level 3 biocontainment space and field and hospital study sites located throughout Egypt.’
For more on our NAMRU labs around the world, and the research they are involved with, you may wish to visit the Naval Medical Research Center website.
Both NAMRU-3 in Egypt, and NAMRU-2 in Cambodia (formerly in Indonesia), have extensive experience with avian flu, and can provide early warning of any major changes in the virus.