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First bird flu death in Bali -

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First bird flu death in Bali

Broadcast: 14/08/2007

Reporter: Peter Cave

There are fears that bird flu is now on the doorstep of Australia after an Indonesian woman and her
five-year-old daughter, who both tested positive to the disease, died in Bali.


TONY JONES: There are fears that bird flu is now on Australia's doorstep with the death of an
Indonesian woman in Bali. The woman tested positive for the deadly H5N1 strain of the disease.

Her five-year-old daughter died from flu-like systems last week but authorities haven't been able
to confirm whether she also had the disease. Eighty-two of the 103 recorded bird flu deaths
worldwide have occurred in Indonesia. Australians visiting Bali are now being advised to stick to
the main centres and avoid villages and poultry.

From Denpasar, Peter Cave reports.

PETER CAVE: The coffin of 29-year-old Ni Luh Putu Sri Windani is removed from the Bali Sanglah
Hospital for cremation. The alarm bells rang over the weekend when she was admitted in a critical
condition with pneumonia and it was revealed that her five-year-old daughter Dian died suffering
similar symptoms just over a week before. Then a two-year-old neighbour was taken from the remote
village on the west of the island with bird flu like symptoms. Now the tests have come back

BAYU KRISNAMURTI, NATIONAL BIRD FLU CENTRE: There's confirmed cases of human bird flu in Bali.

PETER CAVE: Dr Conny Pangkahila treated the victims and she says the outbreak should not affect
tourism in Bali.

DR CONNY PANGKAHILA, DOCTOR: I don't think it will widely impact because these people coming from
isolated area from Jembrana where they found many of the chicken suddenly dead.

PETER CAVE: The AMA (Australian Medical Association) has urged people not to panic.

DR RODNEY PEARCE, AUSTRALIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION: Unless we've got conclusive evidence that there
is human to human transfer, or that we actually have a virulent strain, there's no need to change
our concern from what we've had before, and Australia is incredibly well prepared on the world
scale for a pandemic.

PETER CAVE: What's of particular concern to scientists at the national bird flu centre in Jakarta
are reports that villagers have fed the dead and dying chickens to pigs and that could provide a
vector for the disease to jump from birds to humans.

Epidemiologists have often warned that although it's hard for the disease to be transferred from
human to human, there is a danger of it mutating via a third species and giving rise to the much
feared human pandemic. And that's why the scientists from Jakarta will be trying to confirm beyond
any doubt that all three patients in Bali contracted the disease directly from infected birds.
Peter Cave, Lateline.