We’re having a much tougher time figuring out what’s going on with the H7N9 virus in China this winter, as reporting of cases has become increasingly haphazard, and those reports we do get have very little information in them.
It is possible that closure of some live poultry markets has reduced the number of human infections this year, but the inconsistent reporting of cases and conspicuous lack of detail are less than reassuring.
This from Hong Kong’s CHP.
The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) is today (January 22) closely monitoring an additional human case of avian influenza A(H7N9) in Shenzhen notified by the Health and Family Planning Commission of Guangdong Province (GDHFPC), and again urged the public to maintain strict personal, food and environmental hygiene both locally and during travel.
According to the GDHFPC, the male patient aged 58 with underlying illnesses was hospitalised for treatment in serious condition.
To date, 485 human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) have been reported by the Mainland health authorities, respectively in Zhejiang (145 cases), Guangdong (125 cases), Jiangsu (63 cases), Shanghai (43 cases), Fujian (28 cases), Hunan (24 cases), Anhui (17 cases), Jiangxi (nine cases), Xinjiang (nine cases), Shandong (six cases), Beijing (five cases), Henan (four cases), Guangxi (three cases), Jilin (two cases), Guizhou (one case) and Hebei (one case).
Curiously, we’ve seen cases reported from some of China’s provinces that have yet to be added to Hong Kong’s list, such as the announcement by Xinhua News yesterday that Zhejiang province has seen 14 cases this winter.
The list above only reflects 7 cases this year in Zhejiang.
So, while we continue to get scattered reports of H7N9 out of China, how well that represents the level of activity in this year’s wave remains to be seen.