Vietnam, which has seen no bird flu outbreaks since April, has found that some 6,000 chickens in southern Ben Tre province either infected or killed by bird flu, local newspaper Saigon Liberation reported Tuesday.
Some 6,000 out of 6,700 chickens raised by a local farmer from Chau Thanh district either became sick or died between June 9-11. The whole flock were culled after specimens from them were tested positive to bird flu virus strain H5N1.
Late last week, the Preventive Medicine Department under Vietnam's Health Ministry announced that four local people were infected with H5N1 from June 1-17, including two from Hanoi capital city, one from northern Hai Duong province, and one from central Nghe An province.
All the four people are alive. Now, a total of seven patients are being treated for bird flu in Hanoi-based Institute of Tropical Diseases, the department said. The newly confirmed cases bring the total in Vietnam since mid-December 2004 to 59 cases, of which 18 were fatal.
Since the first bird flu patient was detected in Vietnam in late 2003, Vietnam had detected 86 human cases of bird flu infection, including 38 fatalities, in 31 cities and provinces, the department confirmed late last week.