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Vietnam on alert for bird flu

A 32-YEAR-OLD Vietnamese man has been hospitalized in the country's southern Mekong Delta with pneumonia and doctors suspect he may have caught bird flu, a state-run newspaper said yesterday.

Samples from the man in Vinh Long province, who was suffering from fever, a cough and chest pain were being tested for the H5N1 virus at the Pasteur Institute in Ho Chi Minh City, the Thanh Nien daily said.

The Vietnamese government has warned bird flu could spread during and after the lunar New Year festival, when chicken is consumed in vast quantities. In addition, winter creates an ideal environment for the avian influenza virus to thrive.


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