Three more H5N1 bird flu deaths in Egypt

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Two new deaths from H5N1 avian influenza in women from the Nile Delta reported by Egyptian officials, and a third death involving a 50-year-old woman whose infection was previously confirmed by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Egypt’s state news agency reported that a 25-year-old woman from the city of Mansoura in Dakahlia governorate died in a local hospital 3 days after she was admitted to a smaller hospital with a high fever and breathing difficulties. Egypt’s health ministry said it suspected the woman had handled sick domestic birds, according to Reuters.

Health ministry spokesman Abdel Rahman Shahin said in a statement released to Egypt’s state news agency that a 36-year-old woman from Menufia governorate died in a hospital where she was admitted on Dec 29 with a high fever and difficulty breathing, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) report.

The women’s deaths represent a continued recent H5N1 spike in Egypt. Also on Dec 28 the WHO confirmed a H5N1 infection in a 22-year-old woman from Menofia governorate who was hospitalized on Dec 26 and was reported to be recovering.

Egypt has the world’s third highest number of H5N1 cases, and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization has said the virus is considered endemic among Egyptian poultry.

Source: Center for Infectious Disease Research & Policy, USA

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