- Apriantono told the ElShinta private radio that 19 out
of 27 samples taken from various birds at the zoo, including pigmy chickens
and eagles, contained the bird flu virus.
- Four other samples were inconclusive and the remaining
four were negative, he said.
- 'Usually two weeks are enough but we decided to raise
it to three weeks to make sure unwanted things would not happen,' Apriyantono
said of the closure, adding that some 2,100 birds in the zoo's collection
will be tested for the virus.
- The above comments indicate the bird population at the
Ragunan Zoo in the Pasar Minggu suburb of Jakarta is heavily infected with
H5N1. Since there was no mention of bird deaths, it would appear that the
birds are asymtomatically infected. The zoo is 16 km due south of Jakarta
near the agriculture department.
- In contrast, the cases in Tangerang are southwest of
Jakarta. The pet birdcage across the street from the first Tangerang cluster
was H5N1 positive, but the bird appeared healthy. Thus, without testing
it is unclear how widespread H5N1 is among pet birds, but the limited testing
described in Indonesia's OIE report clearly showed that H5N1 was widespread
and in poultry and swine in several Tangerang sub-districts.
- Although H5N1 is widespread, testing is minimal. In
the neighborhood of the first cluster, only 3 chickens were reported tested.
Similarly, in the closest sub-district the reported tests were also limited
to 3 chickens. This testing is absurd and designed to generate negatives
for inclusion in press releases. In two more Tangerang sub-districts where
testing was somewhat expanded, H5N1 was readily detected in swine and poultry.
- The number of human cases continues to mount, and the
number of false negatives is exceedingly high. Only one of the three infected
family members in the initial cluster were PCR positive. Thus, far there
has only been one additional PCR positive case although several patients
with symptoms also have H5N1 antibodies.
- The testing in Indonesia is scandalously poor. The H5N1
positive swine in Tangerang was largely ignored. After 3 members of a government
worker died, very limited testing and culling was done. When another government
office worker died, a press conference cited negative tests in a 100 meter
radius that excluded the chicken slaughterhouse 100 meters from the victims
- The number of reported positives remains obscure. Four
are dead that were cfdly H5N1 infected. At least two more have H5N1 antibodies
and symptoms. There may be another positive child and a 2 month old who
lived above a chicken slaughterhouse and died of pneumonia was not tested.
- The reported cases appear to be limited to government
employee family members with little contact with poultry. The concentration
of lab confirmed H5 fatalities in one small neighborhood is the highest
- The time has passed for an aggressive testing campaign
to determine the extent of H5N1 in poultry, swine, pet birds, and people.
- WHO's position, including counting on one fatality in
the original H5N1 familial cluster, is dangerous to the world's health.v
- From Patricia Doyle, PhD
- What about the risk to sustained human to human Avian
Flu if H5N1 infected pigs are also carrying another influenza virus, like
H1N1? Pigs are, after all, mixing vessels.
- Patricia A. Doyle, PhD
- Please visit my "Emerging Diseases" message
- Zhan le Devlesa tai sastimasa
- Go with God and in Good Health