Via Reuters: China says bird flu spread slows, vows to stiffen controls. Excerpt:
The spread of a deadly strain of bird flu in China is slowing, health authorities said on Thursday, as they vowed to tighten controls on markets and the transport of live poultry to battle the virus.
As many as 79 people died from H7N9 bird flu in January, the government has said, or up to four times more than the corresponding figure in previous years, stoking worries this season's spread of the virus could be the worst on record.
Authorities have warned against panic and urged precautions, but nevertheless the numbers triggered concern of a repeat of previous health crises, such as the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2002.
From Sunday to Tuesday this week, eight new human infections of H7N9 avian flu were reported, indicating the rate had slowed from the previous reporting period, the National Health and Family Planning Commission said on its website.
"The national epidemic situation clearly shows a downwards trend," it said.
From Feb. 6 to Feb. 12, 69 new cases, including 8 deaths, had been reported, with just three of the 69 reported on Sunday.