Taiwan reports first imported case of H7N9

Taiwan Centers of Disease Control
Thursday, 25 April 2013
By Taiwan Centers of Disease Control

Apr. 25, 2013 - On April 24, 2013, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) confirmed the first imported case of H7N9 avian influenza in a 53-year-old male Taiwanese citizen who worked in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, China prior to illness onset.  He developed his illness three days after returning to Taiwan and infection with avian influenza A (H7N9) was confirmed. 

The patient is currently in a severe condition and being treated. The Minister of Health, Dr. Wen-Ta Chiu, and Commander of CECC, Dr. Feng-Yee Chang, have full knowledge of the situation and have instructed implementation of subsequent prevention and control measures.  In addition, CECC has reported the case to the World Health Organization.

According to the case, he had not been exposed to birds and poultry during his stay in Suzhou, Jiansu Province and had not consumed undercooked poultry or eggs.  On April 9, he returned to Taiwan from Shanghai and developed symptoms three days later.

The CECC has continued to strengthen surveillance and fever screening of travelers arriving from China, especially areas with ongoing outbreaks of human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9), including Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Beijing, Henan and Shandong.

CECC once again urges travelers visiting China to practice good personal hygiene such as washing hands frequently and putting on a mask, take preventive measures such as avoiding direct contact with poultry and birds or their droppings, avoiding visiting traditional markets with live poultry, consuming only thoroughly cooked poultry and eggs.  If symptoms such as fever and cough develop after returning to Taiwan, please put on a surgical mask and seek immediate medical attention.  Moreover, please inform the physician of the recent travel history to facilitate diagnosis and treatment.

For more information, please call the toll-free Communicable Disease Reporting and Care Hotline, 1922, or 0800-001922 if calling from a cell phone, or visit the Taiwan CDC’s website at http://www.cdc.gov.tw.

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