Strict Poultry Tests Will Control Bird Flu in HK, Says Expert

by 5m Editor
12 March 2014, at 12:16am

HONG KONG - A leading respiratory disease expert sees no need to stop importing live chickens from mainland China as long as all the poultry undergoes strict inspection before entering Hong Kong.

Acording to The Standard, Zhong Nanshan, head of the Guangzhou Institute of Respiratory Diseases, suggested the SAR should set up centralisd slaughtering and sell chilled chickens in the market.

A ban on live poultry imports from the mainland is currently in place to guard against avian flu.

Dr Nanshan said avian flu cases in China are sporadic, and there are no signs the virus is spreading between humans.

"If there is a gene mutation that permits human transmissions, China already has a vaccine ready for large- scale production," he said.

Dr Nanshan said 80 per cent of the confirmed cases are from wet markets.

So far, the infection source and the mode of transmission have not been found, but the closing of wet markets deserves more consideration as this involves the livelihood of tens of thousands of people.

Dr Nanshan said it is most important to control the hygienic conditions of markets, such as carrying regular cleaning and sterilization.

If human infection is confirmed, wet markets have to be closed.

So far, there have been 379 cases of H7N9 in the mainland. The latest ones included a Meizhou man, 70, Chaozhou woman, 76, and Fujian man, 27.

Further Reading

You can visit the Avian Flu page by clicking here.