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Bird flu pandemic 'still possible'

Breaking Viral News

THE bird flu virus is "firmly entrenched" in Asia and a pandemic among humans remains possible, a World Health Organisation (WHO) expert warns.

While Asian countries are more prepared to react to any outbreaks than before and have vaccine stockpiles, deaths and infections have continued, noted Takeshi Kasai, the WHO's regional adviser in communicable disease surveillance and response unit.

"The virus has been firmly entrenched in this region, I'm afraid,'' Kasai told reporters today during an exercise to test the Philippines' preparations against the disease.

"The virus itself keeps changing, so the risk of pandemic persists.''

Experts fear the virus, which is usually spread directly from birds to humans, could mutate into a form easily transmissible between people, sparking a deadly global pandemic.

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