Hong Kong suspends bird and poultry imports from Malaysia, after deadly H5 avian influenza was found

The Hong Kong Government has suspended the import of live birds and poultry meat from Malaysia, after a strain of the deadly H5 avian influenza was found in Kelantan.

The Health, Welfare & Food Bureau said no live birds and poultry meat will be allowed to be imported from Malaysia until further notice. Birds in transit will be subject to test and hold on arrival in Hong Kong

Malaysia has reported its avian flu discovery to the World Organisation for Animal Health.

Influenza is an important disease that causes significant death and disability in the United States every year. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 100,000 cases of flu require hospitalization and as many as 36,000 people die from influenza or its complications annually. Pandemic influenza is much rarer, but much more deadly. Pandemics are global epidemics that emerge infrequently but unpredictably and involve strains of the flu virus to which humans have little or no immunity. The last pandemic swept the globe in 1968; most public health experts believe the world is overdue for another one.

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