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January 19, 2006

An expanding family cluster in Indonesia?

Via News.com.au, an Australian news source: Bird flu victims' father shows signs.

An Indonesian man whose two children died of suspected bird flu was in hospital suffering symptoms of the virus, a health ministry official said today.

The 43-year-old man was rushed to the Hasan Sadikin hospital in the western Java town of Bandung yesterday with a high fever and breathing difficulties, health ministry official Hariyadi Wibisono said.

"We will most likely try to move him for further treatment at the Sulianti Saroso hospital in Jakarta," Mr Wibisono said, referring to Indonesia's main treatment centre for patients infected with the potentially fatal virus.

The man's 13-year-old daughter died over the weekend and local tests have showed she was carrying the H5N1 strain of avian influenza, which has killed about 80 people since 2003, mostly in Asia.

His three-year-old son died yesterday and he also had bird flu symptoms. Health officials were still awaiting ministry test results to see if he was infected.

If both cases are confirmed by a World Health Organisation-affiliated laboratory in Hong Kong, the children would be the 13th and 14th bird flu fatalities in Indonesia, the world's fourth most populous nation.

The pair's sister, a 15-year-old girl, was earlier admitted to the same hospital as her father and is also being treated as a suspected case.

Posted by dymaxion at January 19, 2006 09:10 PM

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