A communication campaign against the spread of AH5N1 and AH7N9 strains of bird flu to humans was opened by the Ministry of Health in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho on March 28.

The campaign aims to raise awareness among government agencies and people to prevent the disease from spreading to humans.

It encourages people to ensure food safety, detect and inform about bird flu outbreaks to health and agricultural authorities, co-operate with market watch officials to keep out smuggled poultry and poultry products, and ensure personal hygiene and hygiene in poultry farming and slaughter.

It urges government to strengthen oversight of measures to prevent the flu from spreading to humans.

According to figures from the Ministry of Health, since the beginning of last year China recorded 394 human cases of people flu, of them 121 died.

After a period when the disease seemed to be in retreat, it reared up sharply early this year in China , with 247 infections reported in the first three months, 1.6 times up from the same period last year.

The H7N9 strain has also been reported in Malaysia, Taiwan, and Hong Kong .

As of March 25, some 400 cases had been reported from around Asia, including 121 deaths.

H7N9 bird flu has been reported in 15 Chinese provinces and cities, including in Guangxi and Guangdong , the provinces bordering Vietnam and having tourism and trading exchanges with it.

In Vietnam, the Government and provincial authorities have taken strong measures and, as a result, no cases have been reported in the last one year.

This has come in for great appreciation from the World Health Organisation and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.

The H5N1 strain is also under control and the disease has not occurred for a long time.

The campaign, organised by the ministry with support from the Unilever Vietnam Foundation and Lifebuoy, will see the ministry and other agencies further boost activities to prevent the disease.

On the same day, Can Tho city leaders and representatives of the ministry and 20 southern provinces and cities oversaw measures to combat the disease in Tan Thoi commune in Can Tho.-VNA