Influenza A (H7N9) in China: Updated risk assessment published by ECDC on July 3rd


The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) published an updated rapid risk assessment on influenza A(H7N9) in China on June 30th. The continued transmission of A(H7N9) to humans in China poses the risk that occasional travel-related cases returning from China may be detected in Europe. The risk of the disease spreading within Europe via humans is still considered low, as there is no evidence of sustained person-to-person spread of this influenza virus.

The options for prevention and control of this influenza infection are as follows:

  1. People travelling to China should avoid direct exposure to poultry and refrain from visiting live poultry markets or backyard farms;
  2. Persons who have visited affected areas in China should be made aware that if they develop respiratory symptoms and fever upon their return they should consult their doctor and mention their recent travel history to enable early diagnosis and treatment.

In order to prevent a possible influenza A(H7N9) virus introduction to poultry in the EU, persons returning from affected areas to Europe including Ireland should avoid entering farms on their return from those affected areas for the entire duration of the 10-day incubation period (and during the symptomatic period in the event that they develop symptoms) in order to prevent a possible virus introduction to poultry in the EU.

The full updated ECDC rapid risk assessment is available on the ECDC website.