No cases of avian influenza H7N9 have been recorded in humans or poultry in Vietnam, a health official has said.

Associate Professor Dr. Tran Dac Phu, Deputy Head of the Preventive Medicine Department under the Health Ministry, made the affirmation as neighbouring China continues to experience the complicated developments of the epidemic in the country.

However, Vietnam faces a high risk of a H7N9 outbreak as the country shares a long border with China , which is vulnerable to poultry smuggling and H7N9-infected people crossing the border into Vietnam .

Over the past month, China has confirmed 130 cases of H7N9 and 31 deaths in 11 cities.

The health official called for drastic preventive measures against the new virus, which easily mutates into another strain that is highly adaptable.

The Health Ministry has issued a plan to fight H7N9, he said, adding that the ministry has instructed localities to effectively combine H7N9 prevention with the sector’s activities.

The ministry has closely worked with the World Health Organisation and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations to establish working missions responsible for supervision, communication, testing and addressing emergencies of H7N9.

Many cities and provinces nationwide have also devised concrete plans for H7N9 prevention, he said.

Reviewing efforts made in the fight, Phu said body temperature measuring machines installed at international border gates in April have assessed nearly 270,000 people, including over 90,000 travelling from China .

Thousand of samples taken from people suspected of being infected with H7N9 have been tested in a bid to promptly detect any cases of the virus, he said.-VNA