By Xinhua, [RxPG] Cairo, Dec 24 - With the death of an Egyptian woman due to bird flu Sunday, the death toll by the deadly disease rose to eight since March this year, a World Health Organisation - official said.
The 30-year-old woman, who was admitted to Cairo's Abbasiya fever hospital Saturday, was tested H5N1 positive just hours before her death, WHO regional adviser for communicable diseases surveillance Hassan el-Bushra told Xinhua.
The woman had been admitted to a rural hospital since Dec 17, but was not immediately suspected of being infected with the bird flu virus as she denied having had any contact with poultry, el-Bushra said.
The woman's two family members from the Egyptian Delta governorate of Gharbiya, some 90 km north of Cairo, who were also confirmed infected with the H5N1 virus on Saturday, are in stable conditions after they were admitted to the Abbasiya hospital, he added.
Medical teams had been sent to the infected region to cull all birds around and the rest of the family was under close medical surveillance, el-Bushra said.
Egypt detected the first bird flu case in dead poultry Feb 17, 2006, which then spread to 20 of the country's 26 governorates.
The populous Arab country reported its first human bird flu case March 18.
Since then the total number of human bird flu cases have risen to 18, including eight dead.