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No sign of H7N9 spread from single Chinese patient: CDC

TAIPEI -- All 94 people who came into contact with a sick Chinese tourist have tested negative for the H7N9 avian flu virus with which the woman is infected, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said Thursday.

The Chinese tourist was confirmed Tuesday as having H7N9 avian influenza, and two other tourists in the same group later developed related symptoms but have since tested negative for the virus, the CDC said.

It said 92 other people, including members of the woman's family, other visitors in her tour group and some passengers on her flight to Taiwan, were also tested for H7N9 but the results were all negative.

Among them, however, 71 are receiving assistance to help prevent the spread of the virus, the CDC said.

Except for the patient herself, all 32 Chinese visitors in the tour group left Taiwan on Thursday, the CDC said.

The patient is the third confirmed imported case of H7N9 avian influenza in Taiwan, following a first case confirmed in April 24, 2013 and a second case on December 31.

Since the first case, a total of 576 suspected H7N9 infections have been reported to the CDC, though all but those three have proven negative, it said.

The CDC noted that according to World Health Organization, a total of 290 H7N9 influenza infections have been confirmed around the world since the beginning of October last year, all of which were either Chinese nationals or imported cases originating in China.

It urged visitors to China to maintain good personal hygiene, to avoid direct contact with poultry and birds or their droppings, and to stay away from traditional markets where live poultry is sold.

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