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Taiwan hikes Cambodia travel alert level following rise in H5N1 cases

02/20/2024 09:12 PM
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The Ministry of Health and Welfare. CNA file photo
The Ministry of Health and Welfare. CNA file photo

Taipei, Feb. 20 (CNA) Taiwan's Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) said on Tuesday it had raised Cambodia's travel warning level to "alert," cautioning potential travelers about the H5N1 avian flu that has been spreading in the southeast Asian country.

Cambodia was rated "alert," the second highest on the MOHW travel warning scale on Feb. 17 after the country reported four new cases of the influenza in the last month, spread between the nation's Prey Veng, Siem Reap, and Kratié Provinces.

The four individuals ranged between five and 60 years old, according to the MOHW. One person showed no symptoms while two others experienced severe illness and another died.

Cambodia said a total of 10 people have contracted H5N1 since the start of 2023, with the majority of cases the 2.3.2.1c strain, rather than the 2.3.4.4b strain that is more prominent internationally, according to the MOHW.

The ministry added that World Health Organization (WHO) information shows human-to-human transmission rarely occurs, but warns against coming into unnecessary contact with animals.

(By Tseng Yi-ning and James Lo)

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