Bird flu transmission to humans ‘very rare,’ but avoid contact with wild birds — DOH
MANILA, Philippines — The transmission of avian flu virus from birds to humans is very rare, the Department of Health (DOH) gave assurance on Friday after the Department of Agriculture (DA) confirmed outbreaks of the avian influenza H5N1 in some areas.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the outbreak does not present a major public health concern at the moment.
“Nagdeklara po ang Kagawaran ng Agrikultura ng avian flu outbreak kahapon. Gayunpaman, hindi kinakailangan na mag-alala ang publiko bilang ang chance po ng transmission ng avian flu sa mga tao ay mababa,” she said in a Palace press briefing.
(The Department of Agriculture declared an avian flu outbreak yesterday. However, the public does not need to worry because the chance of transmission of the avian flu to humans is low.)
“Ayon po sa World Health Organization, ang transmission from birds to humans, at humans to humans ng avian flu ay napaka-rare. Ibig sabihin hindi po madalas nangyayari,” Vergeire added.
(According to the World Health Organization, the transmission of avian flu from birds to humans and humans to humans is very rare, meaning it does not happen often.)
However, Vergeire still urged the public to take precautionary measures.
She also noted that since the avian flu is a respiratory infection, the current minimum public health standards against COVID-19 will also be effective against the disease.
“Inaabisuhin pa rin po natin ang publiko na umiwas muna po tayo paglapit sa mga wild birds, sa mga ibong may sakit o doon sa mga tao na naging close contact ng mga ibon o mga fowls ng mga may sakit. Gayundin, ipractice pa rin po ang minimum public health standards,” she added.
(We advise the public to avoid contact with wild birds, sick birds, or individuals who had close contact with sick birds. At the same time, we should continue to practice minimum public health standards.)
The DA earlier ordered stricter preventive measures against bird flu following confirmed outbreaks affecting duck and quail farms in Bulacan, Pampanga, Laguna, and Camarines Sur.
The department issued a memorandum circular that restricts the movement of ducks, quail, chicken, and other poultry commodities in affected areas, specifically those coming from the 1-kilometer quarantine zone.
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