The Health Ministry on February 6 sent a dispatch to Chairpersons of People’s Committees of centrally-run cities and provinces, asking them to accelerate the prevention and fight against H7N9 and other strains of the bird flu virus.

According to the ministry, there is a high risk that new strains of avian flu that are troubling China could enter Vietnam, and that H5N1 may outbreak again in many localities.

The country recorded two deaths from H5N1 in the southern provinces of Binh Phuoc and Dong Thap in January, the ministry said, adding that both victims had been exposed to ill poultry.

Given this situation, the ministry required the municipal and provincial leaders to increase inspections for such new strains of avian flu as H7N9, H10N8, H6N1 and H5N1 at border gates and in the community.

More attention should be placed on information work, visitors who travel to disease hotbeds and inter-sectoral supervision, especially live poultry markets, the dispatch said.

The World Health Organisation said H7N9 is developing complicatedly in China with the number of cases increasing compared to the previous year.
Since March 2013, the country has recorded 298 cases, including 63 deaths, the organisation said.-VNA