Home | News    Monday 24 April 2006

Precautions urged after bird flu detection in Sudan


April 23, 2006 (KHARTOUM) — More than 100,000 chickens at 15 farms in Khartoum were culled this week after the bird flu virus was confirmed in poultry in the capital city and nearby Jazeera state. One man, a poultry farmer, was hospitalized with suspected avian flu, but has tested negative for the virus.

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A hen pokes its head through the chicken wire

Earlier this year, the Sudanese Red Crescent Society (SRCS) distributed one thousand information leaflets about bird flu in northern parts of the country which are in the flight path for migrating birds. People were advised to inform the authorities immediately of any sick or dead poultry and to destroy and bury infected birds and thoroughly disinfect bird cages and any tools that had been in contact with potentially diseased birds or their feces.

The best way to prevent infection, according to guidelines prepared by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRCRC), is to avoid contact with chicken, ducks or other poultry, especially animals which have died for unknown reasons. Even if they are believed to be healthy, birds they should not be transported from one place to another.

Children are at risk because they play where poultry are found. Parents are advised to keep children away from birds, their feathers, feces and other waste and to wash hands thoroughly with soap and water after any contact, said the IFRCRC and SRCS in a press statement.

The slaughter and preparation of food from birds that are potentially affected by the bird flu virus is dangerous and should be avoided. In general, all food should be cooked to an internal temperature of 70 degrees C and should show no signs of rawness. Eggs should be boiled for at least 5 minutes at the same temperature.

Anyone who experiences flu-like symptoms in areas affected by bird flu is advised to seek medical advice. These include nasal discharge, coughing, high fever, muscular and arthritic pain and weakness.


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