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New Strain Of Avian Flu Kills Two Chinese Men, Officials Say

“Two people in China have died and another remains critical after falling ill with a strain of bird flu not detected before in humans, the official Chinese news agency Xinhua reported,” CNN reports (Mullen, 4/1). “The authorities said the two Shanghai men, 27 and 87 years old, fell ill after contracting the H7N9 strain in February and died in March,” and “[a] third person, a 35-year-old woman from the city of Chuzhou, in neighboring Anhui Province, also contracted the strain and is critically ill,” the New York Times writes (Barboza, 3/31). “The World Health Organization (WHO), in an emailed statement to AFP, said there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission in the three reported cases,” Agence France-Presse notes (3/31). “The overwhelming majority of human deaths from bird flu have been caused by the more virulent H5N1, which decimated poultry stocks across Asia in 2003,” the Associated Press/Washington Post adds (3/31).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.