19 February 2014 – The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said today there is no evidence that human patients infected with influenza A(H7N9), a low pathogenic virus in poultry, can transmit the virus to animals, including birds.
“Humans that become ill with influenza A(H7N9) constitute no threat to poultry populations,” underlined FAO Chief Veterinary Officer Juan Lubroth.
The agency’s comments come in the wake of the first human case of A(H7N9) outside China. The patient is originally from Guangdong Province in China – one of the provinces most affected by the virus this year and where the woman is thought to have contracted the infection. She was hospitalized in Malaysia while visiting the country as a tourist.
“This case does not come as a surprise and should not be a cause for increased concern, but should remind the world to remain vigilant,” said Mr. Lubroth.