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H5N1 (Bird Flu)


H5N1 (Bird Flu)

H5N1, also known as “bird flu” has been circulating in California since 2022 and is present in the Bay Area. While the risk of infection in people is low, those who are routinely in close contact with birds or dairy cows should take steps to protect themselves from exposure. 


Protecting Yourself from Bird Flu

What is H5N1 “bird flu?”

H5N1 bird flu is a specific strain or type of influenza virus. H5N1 bird flu is also called highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). H5N1 bird flu can infect wild birds, poultry and mammals such as cows. Human infections with H5N1 bird flu are rare, but the spread of the virus may lead to changes that make it more likely to infect humans.

At this point, there is no evidence that H5N1 spreads easily person-to-person. Since viruses can change over time, this is being closely monitored.