Center applauds NTUH over actions to contain bird flu

‘FIRST STAGE’ OVER::The Central Epidemic Command Center said that so far, H7N9 has been controlled, and Taiwan’s one patient has recovered

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

Wed, Jun 26, 2013 - Page 4

The Central Epidemic Command Center yesterday praised National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH) for its efforts in the prevention and control of the H7N9 bird flu virus.

NTUH remained on high alert and reported the first imported H7N9 infection, which effectively helped halt the spread of the disease, and thereafter successfully treated the patient with the infection, the center said.

Department of Health Deputy Minister Lin Tzou-yien (林奏延) said “the first stage” of a bird flu outbreak has so far been controlled, but “as cross-border interactions around the globe are getting more frequent and common, the risk of infectious diseases being carried across borders is greater and the challenge of disease prevention more daunting.”

“Close cooperation and coordination between medical facilities and public health institutions and between countries is therefore crucial for successful containment of infectious diseases,” Lin said.

Reporting on the post-discharge condition of the H7N9 patient, NTUH deputy superintendent Chang Shan-chwen (張上淳) said the patient, who had suffered kidney failure and other organ damage, had fully recovered, with his kidneys and liver functioning normally.

“The only thing still in need of further observation is the rate of gas exchange taking place in the patient’s lungs, as it has not yet returned to its pre-infection level,” Chang said.

Under the Regulations Governing Awards for the Control of Communicable Diseases, “individuals, medical care institutions and other relevant groups with outstanding contributions to the implementation of communicable disease control operations” are to be awarded by the authority.