Rizal Harahap, The Jakarta Post, Pekanbaru
A hospital employee suspected of having bird flu died on Tuesday evening in Pekanbaru, Riau province after being treated for only a few minutes at Arifin Achmad Hospital.
The 31-year-old man, identified as MN, was employed on the administrative staff of Permata Hati Hospital in Duri district and was initially treated at that hospital.
Three days before checking into Permata Hati, MN came down with a high fever, dry cough and diarrhea.
His condition had been improving when fever returned together with seizures and the transfer to Arifin Ahmad was ordered.
Arifin Achmad spokesperson said upon arrival the patient was already in "terminal" condition. "We prepared the isolation ward for him ... and tried our best ...."
Riau Health Agency has yet to confirm whether bird flu was the cause of death. The agency's health service head Burhanuddin Agung said samples had been sent to the Health Ministry.
The body was released to family after being prepared as per normal procedures in suspected bird flu cases.
An uncle said he did not believe bird flu was the cause. He said MN had no poultry at his house. "He also had no contact with poultry recently."