Hanoi (VNA) – The Philippine Department of Agriculture on August 24 confirmed that the avian influenza strain found in poultry farms on Luzon island was an H5N6, a virus that is transmittable to humans. 

Samples tested positive for H5N6, said Arlene Vytiaco, head of the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Animal Industry for Animal Disease Control Section, adding that this is a dangerous virus strain for poultry and might be transmittable to humans, though its transmission rate is low.

Only 20 people across the world have been infected by the virus H5N6 since it was discovered in 2013, she noted.

Previously, on August 11, the Philippines reported the avian influenza outbreak in a poultry farm in Pampanga province on Luzon island.

Several days after, the country’s Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol confirmed that avian influenza had been found in a farm in Nueva Ecija province, also on Luzon island.

The government then ordered a cull of some 400,000 poultry to prevent the spread of the disease, and imposed a ban on transporting poultry from Luzon to other areas. -VNA