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H7N9 virus not detected in Thai tourist death


15:45, April 05, 2013

KUNMING, April 5 (Xinhua) -- A 14-year-old Thai tourist died from severe pneumonia on Thursday morning in southwest China's Yunnan Province, but no H7N9 virus was detected, local health authorities said Friday.

The teenager with a 119-member tourist group arrived in Yunnan Province from Bangkok on March 23.

He developed symptoms of a cough and runny nose en route from Shangri-La County to Lijiang City on March 26.

The boy was sent to a hospital in Lijiang on the morning of March 28 after he developed breathing difficulties and coughed up pink, frothy sputum.

He was transferred to the First People's Hospital of Kunming, capital city of Yunnan for treatment on Wednesday morning, but died in hospital after rescue efforts failed on Thursday morning.

According to the disease control and prevention departments of Yunnan, test results from the boy for H7N9 (a new strain of bird flu), H5N1 and H9N2 were negative.

Other members of the tourist group have returned back to Thailand except the boy's father. No other person from the group had symptoms of a cough or fever.

To date, Yunnan Province has had no reports of H7N9 infections.

Meanwhile, 16 prefectures and cities across the province have been informed to strengthen the prevention of the H7N9 bird flu virus. All medical institutions are required to investigate pneumonia with unknown causes, and manage and offer treatment for those patients.

East China's Zhejiang Province on Friday morning reported another death from H7N9, bringing the death toll from the new strain to six in the country.

China has confirmed 14 H7N9 cases -- six in Shanghai, four in Jiangsu, three in Zhejiang and one in Anhui, in the first known human infections of the lesser-known strain. Of the cases, four have died in Shanghai and there have been two losses of life in Zhejiang.

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