|Jiangsu Province - Credit Wikipedia|
UPDATED : See bottom
Roughly 14 months ago China abruptly cut back on their real-time reporting of H7N9 cases, and since that time we've had to content ourselves with meager summaries, often coming weeks (or sometimes months) after the cases occurred.
While a few provinces still issue timely reports (most consistently Guangdong), many others announce H7N9 case tallies (sans details) buried in monthly epidemiological reports, which come out near the middle of the following month.
As a result, while the number of H7N9 cases reported this winter is substantially lower than in previous years, we don't have a very good feel for what is going on in China.
Yesterday Jiangsu Province released their EOM epidemiology report for April, and buried in an attached line listing we find they reported 6 new H7N9 cases, five of whom died.
Ministry of Health and Family Planning Commission announced in April 2016 the province's statutory reporting infectious diseases
At 0:00 on April 1, 2016 to April 30 24, the province reported a total of A and B infectious diseases statutory reporting 9300 cases, 28 people died. This month in addition to plague, SARS, polio, highly pathogenic avian influenza, rabies, Japanese encephalitis, dengue fever, anthrax, epidemic cerebrospinal meningitis, diphtheria, neonatal tetanus , leptospirosis, schistosomiasis no incidence report, the remaining 15 kinds of categories A and B infectious diseases were case reports. Reported incidence of the top five diseases: tuberculosis, viral hepatitis, syphilis, gonorrhea, scarlet fever, accounting for 92.68 percent of the total reported cases. Report deaths to the top three diseases: AIDS, tuberculosis, people infected with H7N9 bird flu, accounting for 100% of the total number of deaths.
Schedule: April 2016, Jiangsu Province, statutory reporting and B infectious disease, mortality tables
Meanwhile, this morning Sharon Sanders of FluTrackers has picked up the NHFPC's report for the month of April, where they report a total of 11 H7N9 infections, and 7 deaths nationwide.
Curiously, this report does not mention either of the H5N6 cases they already reported to the WHO during the month of April.
National Health and Family Planning Commission People's Republic of China2016-05-11
April 2016 (at 0:00 on April 1, 2016 to April 30 24), the country (excluding Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, the same below) reported a total of 653,680 cases of legal infectious diseases, died 1285 people.Wherein, the CPI infectious plague incidence and deaths have been reported, the reported incidence of cholera in 2 cases, no deaths. B infectious SARS, polio, highly pathogenic avian influenza and diphtheria morbidity, mortality reports, the remaining 22 infectious diseases were reported incidence of 303,684 cases, 1259 people died. Before the reported incidence of the top five diseases were viral hepatitis, tuberculosis, syphilis, gonorrhea, and bacillary and amoebic dysentery, accounting for 92% of the total reported cases of class B infectious diseases.
Over the same period, the country reported a total of 349,994 cases of Class C infectious disease incidence, death of 26 people, no incidence of filariasis, deaths have been reported. Before the reported incidence of the three diseases were hand-foot-mouth disease, other infectious diarrhea and influenza, accounting for 95% of the total reported cases of class C infectious diseases.
Belated and inconsistent reporting aside, one has to wonder whether the sharp drop in H7N9 cases this year can be attributed to changes in the behavior or distribution of the virus, or whether there has been a change in the way China is now screening for, and reporting on, the virus.
No sooner than I'd posted this blog, Hong Kong's CHP posted a notification of 8 H7N9 cases from the mainland - that somewhat confusingly span March 23rd through April 21st - and therefore doesn't match the totals from either of the two reports above.
CHP notified of eight additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) in Mainland
The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) today (May 11) received notification of eight additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) with onset of symptoms between March 23 and April 21, from the National Health and Family Planning Commission, and again urged the public to maintain strict personal, food and environmental hygiene both locally and during travel. They comprise:
1. A man aged 61 in Wuxi, Jiangsu, with exposure to a poultry market who died on April 19;
2. A man aged 69 in Wuxi, Jiangsu, with exposure to a poultry market who died on April 14;
3. A man aged 36 in Changzhou, Jiangsu, with exposure to poultry and in serious condition;
4. A woman aged 27 in Nantong, Jiangsu, with exposure to a poultry market and in serious condition;
5. A female farmer aged 67 in Nantong, Jiangsu, with exposure to poultry who died on April 14;
6. A woman aged 49 in Wenzhou, Zhejiang, with exposure to a poultry market and in serious condition;
7. A man aged 52 in Wuxi, Jiangsu, with exposure to a wet market and in serious condition; and
8. A male farmer aged 58 in Yantai, Shandong, with exposure to a poultry market and poultry and in serious condition.
From 2013 to date, 747 human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) have been reported by the Mainland health authorities.