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Bird Flu Death: 11-Yr-Old From Haryana is First Recorded Causality This Year

AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria said, there is no need to panic, people working with poultry must take precautions.

Updated
India
2 min read
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India reported its first death due to bird flu this year, as an 11-year-old boy from Haryana succumbed to the virus on Tuesday, 20 July, at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi.

The boy is believed to be the first case of H5N1 virus among humans in India, also known as the 'avian influenza' or 'bird flu'.

PTI reported that the boy had tested negative for COVID-19, but hthe H5N1 infection was confirmed by Pune's National Institute of Virology (NIV).

Staff in Contact With the Boy Unwell

According to NDTV, a staff identified as Susheel was hospitalised on 2 July with pneumonia and leukemia, and a team from the National Centre for Disease Control has been sent to his village in Haryana to trace possible H5N1 cases.

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Bird Flu Outbreak in India

Thousands of wild birds were found dead across several states earlier this year.

The Centre had confirmed bird flu among poultry stocks in Haryana, Delhi, Maharashtra, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand.

Several of the infections were from a different strain of the virus, H5N8, which experts had said is less dangerous to humans, as per IANS.

Thousands of birds were culled across states to prevent the infection from spreading in humans.

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Human-to-Human Transmission Rare: AIIMS Director 

However, Randeep Guleria, the Director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, said that human-to-human transmission of the H5N1 virus is very rare, while adding that there is no need to panic, reported news agency PTI.

Dr Guleria, nevertheless, maintained that contact-tracing and sample collection from the area where the boy resided from needs to be done. It is also important to look for poultry deaths in the area.

“The transmission of the virus from birds to humans is rare and sustained human-to-human transmission of the H5N1 virus has not yet been established and therefore there is no need to panic. But then people working closely with poultry must take precautionary measures and maintain proper personal hygiene."
Dr Randeep Guleria, Director, AIIMS.

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