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Feb 10, 2015

12:56:51 GMT--Biological Hazard - North-America - Canada

EDIS Number: BH-20150127-46796-CAN

Date / time: 27/01/2015 04:18:02 [UTC]

Event: Biological Hazard

Area: North-America

Country: Canada

State/County: Province of British Columbia

Location: [The area was not defined]

Number of Deads: N/A

Number of Injured: N/A

Number of Infected: 2 person(s)

Number of Missing: N/A

Number of Affected: N/A

Number of Evacuated: N/A

Damage level: N/A


A Canadian woman who recently traveled to China has been diagnosed with H7N9 bird flu, an often deadly strain that's infected close to 500 people in China, officials said Monday. The woman's male traveling companion has flu-like symptoms and may also be infected, health officials in British Columbia said. They say there's almost no risk the two will infect anyone else. "Today we are confirming the first case of H7N9 in humans in North America," Canada's health minister Rona Ambrose said in a statement. "Public Health Agency of Canada continues to advise and emphasize that H7N9 does not spread easily from person to person and the risk remains very low." The woman is recovering, British Columbia health minister Terry Lake said. "The individual is a resident of British Columbia and was not symptomatic during travel and only became sick after arrival in Canada. The individual did not require hospitalization and is currently recovering from their illness, in self-isolation," the Canadian health ministry said in a statement. "All close contacts of the individual have been identified and their health is being monitored by provincial public health authorities. The Canadian healthcare system has strong procedures and controls in place to respond to and control the spread of infectious diseases and protect healthcare workers." H7N9 is one of many different strains of avian influenza circulating among wild birds and domestic poultry. It's one of two strains that have infected people more than once or twice. The other strain is H5N1 avian influenza. The World Health Organization has reported 485 people have been infected with H7N9 and says 185 people have died of it. H5N1 has infected nearly 700 people in 16 countries, killing about 400. Just a year ago, a Canadian woman who had recently traveled to China died of H5N1.

Event updates:

Situation Update No. 2 on 2015-02-03 at 14:36:28.

Situation Update No. 1 on 2015-01-30 at 15:34:21.

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