Avian flu claims victim in Jakarta

PHOTO: Avian flu claims victim in Jakarta

The Health Ministry has confirmed the second case of human infection from the avian influenza H5N1 in the country this year, which claimed the life of a 33-year-old man in Jakarta.

The ministry's health research and development centre head, Tjandra Yoga Aditama, said that the victim, Reza Ahmadi, was pronounced dead at Pondok Kopi Islamic Hospital, East Jakarta, last month.

"The laboratory confirmed the H5N1 [infection], based on the real-time and conventional PCR [Polymerase Chain Reaction] diagnostics on the victim's specimen," he said in a press statement released on Tuesday.

It is the second laboratory-confirmed case of human infection of avian influenza following a case in Wonogiri, Central Java.

On April 20, 2014, a 2-year-old toddler identified as RNA died of avian flu following exposure to live poultry. An inquiry by the Health Ministry found that prior to RNA's death, almost 70 chickens had died from apparent avian flu infection.

According to Tjandra, there have been 17 confirmed cases worldwide of avian flu in humans this year. Cambodia has recorded the most so far, with nine cases, while Indonesia, Egypt, Vietnam and China have recorded two cases each.

Accumulatively, Indonesia has witnessed 197 cases of humans infected with avian flu, making it the nation with the highest number of H5N1 human infection cases to date. Egypt and Vietnam follow with 175 cases and 127 cases, respectively.