Overview on Prevention and Control Measures for Human Infection with HPAI H5N2 Virus in Taiwan in 2012

Ssu-Yi Huang1, Chang-Hsun Chen2, Ya-Jung Hu3, Yi-Li Shih1, Chia-Chi Chang1,
Yen-Nan Chao4, Yu-Min Chou1, Shu-Mei Chou1, Chin-Hui Yang1, Feng-Yee Chang5

2013 Vol.29 NO.17

Correspondence Author: Ssu-Yi Huang

  • 1. Fourth Division, Centers for Disease Control, Taiwan
  • 2. Third Division, Centers for Disease Control, Taiwan
  • 3. Nation Cheng Kung University Hospital
  • 4. Far Eastern Memorial Hospital
  • 5. Centers for Disease Control, Taiwan


       Outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) A (H5N2) in poultry that occurred in Taiwan in early 2012 have raised much public concern. Although previous studies and surveillance data from foreign countries and Taiwan showed that the threat caused by avian influenza H5N2 virus to human health is extremely low, Taiwan CDC has convened expert consultation meetings to determine relevant prevention and control measures and has held the First Meeting of the Task Force for HPAI H5N2 Outbreak in Poultry in collaboration with the Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine (BAPHIQ) of Council of Agriculture (COA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the Department of Health (DOH), local health departments, and local animal disease control centers to discuss the control procedures in response to the outbreaks. In addition, Taiwan CDC has published the Guidelines for Prevention and Control of Human Infection with Avian Influenza H5N2 Virus for the general public based on the contents described in the National Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Plan about the issues of outbreak investigation, health information dissemination, and health monitoring of the close contacts. Meanwhile, if necessary, the monitoring of viral infections will be conducted by detecting viral RNA and antibody titer among the close contacts to understand the impact of the outbreaks on their health. No human cases had been clinically diagnosed when the H5N2 outbreaks occurred in poultry in 2012.

       This article provides a brief introduction on avian influenza viruses, avian influenza H5N2 outbreaks that have occurred in Taiwan and other countries, threats of H5N2 virus to human health, how to prevent infection with H5N2 virus, and the prevention and control strategies for human avian influenza case and response measures against an epidemic in Taiwan. Also, we have summarized key issues from the Guidelines for Prevention and Control of Human Infection with Avian Influenza H5N2 Virus. We hope that this article will help citizens have a better understanding on the prevention and control of avian influenza H5N2 virus infection and can be used as a reference in formulating the infectious disease control policy.