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H5 bird flu is widespread in wild birds worldwide and is causing outbreaks in poultry and U.S. dairy cows with two cases of H5 in U.S. dairy workers. While the current public health risk is low, CDC is watching the situation carefully and working with states to monitor people with animal exposures. CDC is using its flu surveillance systems to monitor for H5N1 activity in people.

For current avian flu information, visit: CDC H5N1 Bird Flu Current Situation​ 

Protective Actions for People

  • Avoid direct contact with wild birds and observe them only from a distance, if possible. Learn more.

  • ​Avoid contact with wild or domestic birds that appear ill or have died and call to report sick or dead birds. Learn more.

  • ​Avoid unprotected exposure to infected live or dead animals or surfaces contaminated by them. Learn more.

  • Avoid unprotected direct physical contact or close exposure with cows and materials potentially infected or confirmed to be infected with HPAI A(H5N1) virus. Learn more.

  • People should not eat or drink raw milk or products made with raw milk. Choosing pasteurized milk is the best way to keep you and your family safe. Learn more.

  • It is safe to eat properly handled and cooked poultry in the United States. There are recommendations around products from other animals with H5N1 virus infections, including cattle and milk. Learn more.

  • CDC does not currently recommend any travel restrictions related to bird flu to countries affected by bird flu in birds, other animals or people. Learn more.

  • Learn what to do if you have contact with infected birds or other animals and become sick. Learn more.

  • Visit CDC’s avian influenza (bird flu) information for health professional and laboratorians webpage for the latest guidance. Learn more

  • Seasonal flu vaccination will not prevent infection with bird flu viruses, but can reduce the risk of getting sick with human influenza viruses and thus the risk for seasonal and bird flu co-infection. Learn more.


Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (usda.gov)
CDC: H5N1 Bird Flu Response Update 5/24/24
CDC: Influenza (Flu)
IDPH: Avian Influenza
IDPH: Raw Milk and Your Health​
Illinois Department of Agriculture: Avian Influenza
MMWR: Outbreak of H5N1 Virus in U.S. Dairy Cattle and Detection of Two Human Cases - United States, 2024