With the war in Ukraine along with other disasters such as Covid-19 taking up much of the media it may come as a shock to many of you that at the moment the US is having another health crisis—Bird, or avian flue. More than 3% of the country's egg-laying chickens have died or been culled due to the fast-spreading disease—A total of nearly 20 million birds have died due to the highly pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) which began earlier this year. The supply crisis due to feed shortages caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine is expected to increase the supply shortages, which will push-up prices even higher.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the cases in birds do not present an immediate public health concern. No human cases of the avian influenza virus have been detected in the United States, however, and, something the CDC failed to mention in their report avian influenza has crossed over to humans in other parts of the planet recently.
Novel bird flu has been detected in seven workers of a poultry farm in southern Russia, Head of the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing Anna Popova said at a briefing in February last year."Scientists of the Vector Center isolated the genetic material of this kind of bird flu in seven workers of a poultry farm in the south of the Russian Federation, where an outbreak in bird population was recorded in December 2020," she said. The top sanitary doctor added that this was the first confirmed case of the infection of humans with the A(H5N8) bird flu virus worldwide. According to her, all measures for the protection of humans and animals were implemented shortly, all risks were minimised and the situation did not develop further."
The Vector Center of the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing has already added to the international GISAID database the data of whole-genome sequencing of the (H5N8) virus with those mutations that allowed it to cross the interspecies barrier. 239 human cases of H5N1 bird flu have been reported in China and Southeast Asia since 2003, killing 134 people. More recently, two people in China were infected with H5N6 bird flu in January, resulting in the death of a three-year-old girl. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported one new case of human infection with avian influenza A(H9N2) virus in China during the first week of 2021. The case was a 1-year-and 4-month-old male from Yunfu, Guangdong Province, China, who had exposure to domestic poultry prior to the onset of illness. He developed mild symptoms on 28 December 2020 and was admitted to a hospital on 29 December. As of 4 January 2021, no family cluster was reported.