As if the rapid spread of coronavirus isn’t scary enough, there’s now an outbreak of H5N1 bird flu in Hunan, China.
Reuters reported that out of 7850 chickens, 4500 of them have died of bird flu. The World Health Organization (WHO) website states that although H5N1 “causes a highly infectious, severe respiratory disease in birds”, transmission between people is unlikely.
Still there are rare cases that H5N1 can still spread to humans. Back in 2003, the H5N1 avian flu took 455 human lives worldwide. That being said, those who catch this type of flu usually “have close contact with infected birds or contaminated areas”.
What does this mean for Malaysia?
Deputy minister Sim Tze Tzin has assured the public that the Malaysian Quarantine and Inspection Services (Maqis) has things under control through their regular inspections of poultry from China.
“There is no need to panic. In terms of poultry, we are 103% self-sustainable in the country. We only import a small portion of processed chicken from China,” Sim was quoted as saying.