Germany reportsbird flu suspect
2 February 2004
HAMBURG – A woman has been taken to a tropical diseases clinic in Germany to be tested for symptoms of bird flu, the hospital said Monday.
Bernhard Fleischer, head of the Bernhard-Nocht-Institute in the northern city of Hamburg, said the woman was suffering from a high temperature but it was too early to draw any firm conclusions.
“There are many reasons to be running a fever when returning from Asia,” he said. The results of tests on the woman are expected to be available in the evening.
A fire brigade spokesman said a woman returning from a holiday in Thailand was taken Monday to the tropical diseases clinic along with a woman who had accompanied her.
But health officials attempted to play down the case saying that it was very unlikely that the tourists could have come down with bird flu.
According to officials with the Berlin-based Robert Koch institute for tropical diseases “it was very unlikely but not impossible” that the woman and her travelling companion might have become the latest victims of the disease that has been spreading through south east Asia and China.
Even so the news that the two tourists have dispatched to the institute has set alarm bells ringing across the giant German travel industry.
Despite the cautious response of health officials, shares in German travel companies came under pressure Monday.
[Copyright DPA with Expatica]
Subject: German news