Released yesterday, we have the latest FAO update on H7N9 activity in China, which bring us to 1461 confirmed human cases since the virus first emerged in the spring of 2013. This latest weekly update added 17 cases, which we first saw reported a week ago today.
While the number of new cases being reported is running well below what we were seeing in January and February, significant activity continues. This despite the closure of many live markets in affected areas, steps that in the past have greatly reduced disease transmission.The trend towards seeing more H7N9 in China's northern provinces continues, with Beijing's cluster increasing by 2 this week. Some excerpts from yesterday's report follow. Items in red indicate new information since the last report.
Follow the link below to read the full report:
H7N9 situation update
4 May 2017, 11:00 hours; Rome
The next update will be issued on 10 May 2017
Situation: Influenza A(H7N9) virus with pandemic potential.
Country: China; three human cases originated in China and were reported in Malaysia (1) and Canada (2).
Number of human cases: 1461 confirmed; 551 deaths (since February 2013).
Number of new findings in birds or the environment since last update (26 April 2017): 37.
Number of new human cases since last update (26 April 2017): 17.
Provinces/municipalities: Beijing, Chongqing, Shanghai and Tianjin Municipalities; Anhui, Fujian, Gansu, Guangdong, Guizhou, Hebei, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Jilin, Liaoning, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shandong, Sichuan, Taiwan, Yunnan and Zhejiang Provinces; Hong Kong SAR; Macao SAR, Guangxi, Ningxia Hui, Tibet and Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Regions; Sabah (Malaysia); British Columbia (Canada).
Animal/environmental findings: around 2,500 virological samples from the environment, chickens, pigeons, ducks and a tree sparrow tested positive; positives mainly from live bird markets, vendors and some commercial or breeding farms.
Highly pathogenic virus findings: Out of the 1461 confirmed human cases, H7N9 virus isolates from three cases (two from Guangdong and one from Taiwan Provinces) were found to be highly pathogenic for chickens. The H7N9 highly pathogenic avian influenza virus was detected in a total of 41 poultry or environmental samples (30 chickens, 1 duck and 10 environmental samples) from 23 live bird markets (LBMs) in: Fujian (Longyan City), Guangdong (Dongguan, Guangzhou, Huizhou, Lufeng, Meijiang, Meizhou, Zhongshan Cities and Haifeng County), Guangxi (Guilin City) and Hunan (Chenzhou City) Provinces; and from 3 farms in: Guangxi (Guilin City) and Hunan (backyard in Chenzhou City and a large farm in Yongzhou City [reference]) Provinces.
FAO actions: liaise with China and partners, monitor situation, monitor virus evolution, conduct market chain analysis, risk assessment, surveillance guidance and communication.
Map 1. Human cases and positive findings in birds or the environment
Human cases and positive findings in birds or the environment
Click to enlarge - Note: Human cases are depicted in the geographic location where they were reported; for some cases, exposure may have occurred in a different geographic location. Precise location of 23 human cases in Anhui (2), Beijing (2), Guangdong (1), Guangxi (1), Hebei (2), Hunan (1), Hubei (2), Jiangsu (1), Jiangxi (6), Sichuan (2) and Zhejiang (3) Provinces are currently not known, these cases are therefore not shown on the map.
3 May, Shaanxi Province: While no virological positive samples from animals have ever been reported, a first H7N9 human case occurred in Qindu District, Xianyang City, with onset on 23 April. A specimen of the male patient tested positive for H7N9 virus nucleic acid on 30 April and he died on 1 May due to multiple organ failure [reference].
2 May, the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture issued the monthly surveillance report for March including a part of the results from the H7N9 intensified surveillance conducted from 25 January to 28 February. 453,951 samples were collected from 21,978 sites. 1533 out of 290,836 serological samples tested positive for H7 subtype and 55 out of 163,115 virological samples were H7N9 positive [reference].