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Indonesian man tests positive for bird flu
December 12, 2007 / 9:48 AM / in 10 years

Indonesian man tests positive for bird flu

JAKARTA, Dec 12 (Reuters) - A Indonesian man from an area west of the capital has tested positive for bird flu and is being treated at a hospital in Jakarta, a health ministry official said on Wednesday.

Joko Suyono, an official at the health ministry’s bird flu centre, said the 47-year-old man from Tangerang kept ducks at his home and had recently travelled to the cities of Medan in Sumatra and Pandeglang in West Java.

"Two tests have confirmed that he suffered from H5N1 and the agriculture ministry has taken samples from the ducks and is still investigating where he may have contracted the virus," Suyono said.

Contact with sick fowl is the most common way of contracting bird flu, which is endemic in bird populations in most part of Indonesia.

Mukhtar Ikhsan, an official at Jakarta’s Persahabatan hospital, said the man was being treated in an emergency unit and was on a respirator.

On Monday, a 28-year-old woman, who also came from Tangerang, died of bird flu after being treated at the same hospital.

Indonesia has had 115 confirmed human cases of bird flu and suffered 92 human deaths, the highest number globally.

Although bird flu remains mostly an animal disease, experts fear that the virus could mutate into a form easily passed from person to person and kill millions. (Reporting by Mita Valina Liem; editing by Ed Davies and Alex Richardson)

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