In China's first reported human bird flu case in six months, Anhui's provincial health bureau said a 37-year-old farmer was discharged from hospital Saturday after being admitted with fever symptoms on December 10. No animal outbreak was found near where the patient lives, raising fears that the virus may be circulating in the countryside undetected, the South China Morning Post reported. The man was only confirmed to have been infected with H5N1 two days after he was discharged from hospital following tests by the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Questions remained about how the farmer contracted the disease and why the case was confirmed only after he was discharged from hospital. Ministry of Health spokesman Mao Qunan said patients who had contracted pneumonia with unknown causes were treated as though they had contracted bird flu even if they tested negative for the virus in the early stages of treatment.
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