China Appeals for Calm: Reports First Human Case of H10N3 Bird Flu
What may prove to be the first case of the H10N3 strain of bird flu passing to a human has been detected in China, reports said Tuesday, as local health authorities assured the world the risk of large-scale spread is “low.”
AP reports a man in eastern China has contracted the strain, with the 41-year-old in Jiangsu province, northwest of Shanghai, hospitalized April 28. He remains in a stable condition, the National Health Commission (NHC) said on its website, and his close contacts had reported no “abnormalities.”
No human case of H10N3 has been reported elsewhere, the commission said.
“This infection is an accidental cross-species transmission,” its statement said. “The risk of large-scale transmission is low.”
H10N3 is a less severe strain of the virus in poultry.
The most well-known avian flu strain, H5N1, has a 60 percent mortality rate, but the U.S. has yet to report any infections among people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
While many different strains of avian influenza are currently in China, there have been no significant numbers of human infections since the H7N9 strain killed about 300 people from 2016-2017, Reuters reported.
No other cases of human infection with H10N3 were previously noted around the globe, the NHC said, with the assurance coming as China continues to be criticized over its initial response to the coronavirus pandemic that began in Wuhan in late 2019 before sweeping the globe.
Chinese officials blocked two members of the World Health Organization (WHO) team investigating the origins of Covid-19 from entering China. https://t.co/4QwbQXOtct
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) January 17, 2021
Avian flu is no stranger to the Chinese agricultural landscape, as Breitbart News reported, nor are attempts to conceal an outbreak or its origins.
Fourteen years before China was widely accused of covering up its 2019 coronavirus outbreak, U.S. diplomatic cables confidentially charged that China attempted to hide the deadly H5N1 strain of avian influenza.
The government cable told a story of Chinese officials outright misleading American officials about the 2006 bird flu outbreak while engaging in a media blackout and disseminating “misinformation.”
The storyline included a man visiting “wet markets” in Guangzhou.
On the same day the man died of the avian influenza, the cables say top Chinese public health officials from Guangzhou claimed to a U.S. medical military delegation not a single reported case of avian influenza – either human or animal – had occurred in over a year in Guangdong province.
Also, the cable said that throughout the ordeal China never contacted the World Health Organization to warn them about the outbreak.