Guangdong province - due to its close proximity to, and trade relations with Hong Kong - is generally pretty good about notifying Hong Kong's CHP (and posting on their own Health Ministry website), whenever new avian flu cases are detected.
Many other provinces only release information directly to China's National Authorities, usually buried in EOM epidemiological reports.
As a result, we often only find out about some cases weeks (or sometimes months) after the fact, and key information is frequently missing. Despite these limitations, Sharon Sanders and her team at FluTrackers do a terrific job piecing together we do have into a constantly updated H7N9 Case Line List.
Today Guangdong Province published a notice of two new H7N9 cases this week, along with the H5N6 case I wrote about yesterday. First that notice, then the HK CHP notification.
From Hong Kong's CHP:
2016-03-16 10:09:00 Ministry of Health and Family Planning CommissionThis week (March 10 to March 16 to 10:00 AM) province reports new H7N9 cases, two cases were Shantou (Case 1: Male, 56 years old) and Zhongshan (Case 2: Female, 39 years) report. New H5N6 cases in 1 case, Huizhou report (case: female, 40 years old).Up to now, the province reported a total of 2016 H7N9 cases, 11 cases (compared with the same period in 2015 decreased 84.0%) were cured in 4 cases, 3 deaths; H5N6 cases in 4 cases, 1 cases were cured, 2 died.Experts advise: the public should remain vigilant, take the following measures to prevent H7N9 / H5N6. To wash their hands: after contact with poultry, wash hands before meals and after. To cook: poultry and eggs should be cooked before eating. To early treatment: If you develop fever, cough, headache, general malaise and other respiratory symptoms, should as soon as possible to the nearest medical institution for treatment. If before contact with birds, to take the initiative to tell the doctor. Do not eat dead poultry. Do not buy poultry products from unknown sources. As far as possible to avoid live bird markets.
CHP notified of two additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) in Guangdong
The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) today (March 16) received notification of two additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) between March 10 and 16 from the Health and Family Planning Commission of Guangdong Province, and again urged the public to maintain strict personal, food and environmental hygiene both locally and during travel.
The two patients involved a 56-year-old man who lives in Shantou and a 39-year-old woman who lives in Zhongshan.
"H5 and H7N9 avian influenza viruses can cause severe infections in humans. Due to the seasonal pattern, our risk assessment shows that the activity of avian influenza viruses will continue to remain at a high level. Human H5N6 and H7N9 cases have been recorded in the Mainland in recent months. Locally, birds positive for H5N6 and an imported human case of avian influenza A(H7N9) were also detected since the end of last year. The public, particularly poultry traders, travellers and those who may visit the Mainland, should be highly alert. Do not visit poultry markets or farms. Avoid poultry contact. We will continue to monitor the regional and global disease situation," a spokesman for the CHP said.
From 2013 to date, 712 human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) have been reported by the Mainland health authorities.
The CHP only lists 712 human cases, while other lists (including FluTracker's and the World Health Organization's) list more. The scatter shot reporting from China, differences in how each agency categorizes cases, and different cut-off dates all contribute to these differences.