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New York officials report the first ever case of bird flu spread from cat to human

Submitted by: Odio @ 03:17 PM | Wednesday, December 28, 2016 | (url: http://www1.nyc.g...)

One person, of more than 350 people screened, has been found with H7N2; this person is a veterinarian who had prolonged close exposure to respiratory secretions of sick cats at Animal Care Centers of NYCs (ACC) Manhattan shelter and has recovered from mild illness

Precautionary guidance issued for people who recently adopted a cat from any NYC shelter or rescue group

December 22, 2016 The Health Department today announced that its ongoing investigation of an outbreak of low pathogenic avian influenza H7N2, a strain of influenza A virus, among cats housed at Animal Care Centers of NYCs (ACC) shelters confirms that the risk to humans is low. One person has been found with a presumptive diagnosis of this virus, which was identified by Health Department lab testing and preliminarily confirmed by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lab testing yesterday. Further testing will be forthcoming in coming days.

The infected person is a veterinarian who was involved in obtaining respiratory specimens from sick cats at the Manhattan shelter. The illness was mild, short-lived, and has resolved. More than 160 ACC employees and volunteers, including several people who had similar exposure to sick cats, were screened by the Health Department and not found to have infection with the H7N2 virus. Additionally, the Health Department contacted more than 80% of the people who adopted cats from the Manhattan shelter, and none is suspected of having H7N2.

There have been two previous documented human cases of H7N2 infection in the United States one in a person managing an outbreak of the virus in turkeys and chickens in 2002 and the other with an unknown source in 2003. Both of these patients also had mild illness and recovered. This is the first reported case due to exposure to an infected cat. There has been no documented human-to-human transmission.



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