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CDC Confirms Second H5 Bird Flu Case in Michigan Amid Dairy Outbreak

CDC Confirms Second H5 Bird Flu Case in Michigan

CDC Confirms Second H5 Bird Flu Case in Michigan

Atlanta, GA – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed a chilling second human case of the highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) A(H5) virus in Michigan. This marks the third human infection in the United States connected to an alarming multistate outbreak of A(H5N1) in dairy cows. The three cases, although not linked to one another, share a common and frightening origin: probable cow-to-person transmission.

The most recent case has raised new fears as it presents typical symptoms of acute respiratory illness associated with influenza virus infections, including A(H5N1). This development has triggered heightened surveillance by the CDC, especially in the affected states, as they continue to monitor for signs of unusual influenza activity. Fortunately, there has been no spike in emergency room visits or laboratory detections of human influenza cases so far.

Case Background

The latest victim is a dairy worker who reported terrifying symptoms to local health officials after exposure to H5N1-infected cows on a different farm from the case last week. The patient, showing upper respiratory tract symptoms including a cough without fever and eye discomfort with watery discharge, was swiftly given antiviral treatment with oseltamivir. Now isolated at home, the patient’s symptoms are slowly improving. Household contacts of the patient, though currently symptom-free, are under close watch and have been offered antiviral medication. No other workers at the farm have reported symptoms, but all are under stringent surveillance.

Specimens from the patient tested positive for influenza A(H5) virus at the state health department laboratory, with CDC confirmation received on May 29. Genetic sequencing is underway, and results expected within 1-2 days will reveal if any dangerous changes have occurred in the virus.

CDC Activities and Risk Assessment

Michigan’s active monitoring program, in collaboration with the CDC, detected this disturbing case. The emergence of another H5 case underscores the critical need for a proactive public health response. With the virus spreading in dairy cows, additional human cases among those at higher risk are a looming threat.

The CDC is urgently working to prevent further A(H5N1) infections among dairy herd workers, who face heightened danger. Interim recommendations for worker protection have been updated, and states have been urged to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to farmworkers. The CDC is also intensifying outreach efforts to farmworker groups.

CDC Recommendations

  • Wear PPE: Always use recommended personal protective equipment when interacting with infected or potentially infected animals. Monitor health for 10 days after the most recent exposure.

  • Avoid Risky Exposure: Steer clear of close, prolonged, or unprotected exposure to sick or dead animals, including wild birds, poultry, domesticated birds, and other wild or domesticated animals (including cows).

  • Avoid Contaminated Materials: Do not handle animal excrement, bedding, unpasteurized milk, or materials contaminated by infected animals without protection.

For more detailed information and updates, visit the CDC’s H5N1 Bird Flu: Current Situation Summary.

Stay informed and stay safe.



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