Disease

Nigeria: Meningitis in Sokoto, Rabies in Lagos

Nigerian health officials report five deaths due to bacterial meningitis in Sokoto state, according to a Premium Times report. The five victims in Gada and Wauru towns of Gada Local Government area. In Lagos, two human rabies deaths have been reported at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH).

Avian influenza update: China

The China National Health and Family Planning Commission reported 21 additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9), including four deaths, from March 10 to 16.

Mumps arrives in Louisiana

The Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) reports that cases of mumps are beginning to appear in Louisiana. As of Wednesday, there have been 12 cases of mumps reported by the LDH Office of Public Health.

“There has been a large outbreak of mumps cases in Arkansas and we’re starting to see cases in Louisiana now,” said Dr. Frank Welch, medical director of the state Immunization Program, Louisiana Department of Health.

Disease

Human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus – China

On 10 March 2017, the National Health and Family Planning Commission of China (NHFPC) notified WHO of 26 additional laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus in mainland China.

Dengue in the Pacific

At least nine Pacific Island Nations today are experiencing dengue fever outbreaks, according to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

The Solomon Islands has experience the highest number of cases, with more than 10,000 suspected infections since a dengue outbreak was declared in October 2016.

In Vanuatu, suspected dengue cases have risen to almost 2,000 since November 2016, impacting five of the countries six provinces.

In Fiji, the Red Cross has been disseminating information about dengue as part of its Tropical Cyclone Winston recovery work since May last year. There have been 155 confirmed cases of dengue so far in Fiji in 2017.

In American Samoa the government has declared a public health emergency after 30 suspected and 13 confirmed dengue cases. It is the first time the country has had a case of dengue serotype 2 since 1972.

In New Caledonia there have been 1,163 dengue cases and three people have died from the disease. Nauru has 50 suspected cases, and the virus has also been confirmed in Palau (51), French Polynesia (29) and Australia (202).

Disease

Human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus – China

Between 24 February and 7 March 2017, a total of 58 additional laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection have been reported to WHO from mainland China and China, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR).

Another outbreak of White Spot disease in Queensland, Australia

Queensland’s $360 million prawn industry has been dealt another blow with news the troublesome white spot virus has spread into Moreton Bay.

Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Bill Byrne says the virus that causes the disease has been detected near the Redcliffe Peninsula and Deception Bay.

Mr Byrne says the state government’s established a movement control order to prevent its spread, which will be in place for three months to allow further testing before determining future action.

Disease

Bird Flu – H5N8 strikes Nepal for first time; Vietnam reports H5N1, H5N6

Nepal’s livestock department recently reported the country’s first outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian flu, which stuck a commercial farm, as several countries in Europe reported more detections, including the already hard-hit southwestern section of France.

In related developments, Vietnam reported more outbreaks from two other highly pathogenic strains: H5N1 and H5N6.

Nepal’s H5N8 outbreak began on Mar 1 at a layer farm in Koshi zone in the southeastern part of the country, according a Mar 10 report to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). The virus hit layers in two different sheds, one housing 40-week-old birds and the other containing 20-week-old poultry. Of 6,200 susceptible birds, the virus killed 3,650, and authorities culled the remaining ones to contain the spread of the disease. Rapid response teams also destroyed eggs, feed, egg trays, and some local hens. Surveillance has been stepped up in the surrounding area.

Meanwhile, Nepalese officials also reported another H5N1 outbreak, the third reported in recent weeks in Nepal. The latest outbreak occurred not far from the H5N8 outbreak in poultry. The event began on Mar 2 at a small zoo at a recreation park. The virus killed 6 of 14 whooper swans and 1 Asian openbill stork. Officials temporarily closed the park, as workers cleaned and disinfected the sheds and buried the dead birds.

Malaria declared an epidemic in Burundi

Burundi is suffering a worrying malaria epidemic, with more than 800 deaths since the beginning of the year. These figures are more than a quarter of the 3000 who died from malaria in 2016. Out of the 11 million total population, more than eight million cases of affected people were recorded in 2016.

Disease

Zika: CDC issues new travel notices

Local transmission of Zika virus in four countries has prompted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is issue advisories for travelers to Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Maldives and Solomon Islands. Local transmission means that mosquitoes in the area have been infected with Zika virus, spreading it to people.

More human H7N9 avian flu cases reported in China

The China National Health and Family Planning Commission reported 22 additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9), including three deaths during the past week. The 15 male and seven female patients, aged from 15 to 79, had their onset from February 19 to March 4.

Saudi Arabia: MERS cases up in 2017 to date

According to a World Health Organization (WHO) update, at the end of February 2017, a total of 1916 laboratory-confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), including 702 deaths (case–fatality rate: 36.6%) were reported globally. Of these, Saudi Arabia reported a total of 1561 laboratory-confirmed cases, including 633 deaths (case–fatality rate: 40.6%). In January 2017, a total of 18 laboratory-confirmed cases, including 6 deaths (case–fatality rate: 33.3%) were reported, while in February a total of 12 laboratory-confirmed cases, including 3 deaths were reported from Saudi Arabia.

Disease

Measles epidemic declared in Guinea

A measles epidemic has been declared in 14 of the 38 health districts in Guinea. 13 districts have been put on alert. Since the beginning of the year, 1,527 cases of measles have been diagnosed, of which 1,517 were cured. Two patients have died and eight remain under treatment.

Nigeria: Borno State reports 1st Lassa fever outbreak in decades

Borno state in northeast Nigeria has recorded its first Lassa fever outbreak in almost five decades. The last confirmed outbreak of the deadly disease was in 1969. WHO is supporting the government to contain the outbreak in an area of the country which is already coping with a humanitarian crisis resulting from years of conflict.

China reports 21 more H7N9 avian influenza cases, 3 deaths

The Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission reported 21 additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9), including three deaths, from February 24 to March 2.

The 17 male and four female patients, aged from 10 to 77, had their onset from February 10 to 27. The cases were from Guangdong (six cases), Anhui (four cases), Jiangsu (three cases), two cases each in Guangxi and Jiangxi, and one case each in Hubei, Hunan, Shanghai and Zhejiang. Among them, 18 were known to have exposure to poultry or poultry markets.

Disease

Deadly ‘H7N9’ Avian Flu Spreads in China

A particularly deadly strain of avian flu, currently found in China, has infected more people there this flu season than it has in any season since the virus was identified, a new report finds.

From October 2016 to February 2017, 460 people were reported infected with the H7N9 virus, according to the report, which was published today (March 3) by the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This season is considered to be the fifth annual epidemic of the virus, which was first identified in early 2013.

During the first epidemic, which occurred in early 2013, 135 people were infected with the virus, according to the report. In the next epidemic, in 2013 to 2014, 320 people were infected; in the 2015 to 2016 epidemic, 226 people were infected; and in the 2015 to 2016 epidemic, 119 people were infected, according to the report.

New Bird Flu Outbreak in UK

Around 55,000 ducks are to be destroyed after a bird flu outbreak was discovered at another farm in south-eastern England.

The Department of Food And Rural Affairs (Defra) announced on Friday that avian influenza H5N8 has been found on a farm near Redgrave, Suffolk. Officials detected the highly pathogenic virus while investigating a separate poultry farm nearby where chickens were confirmed to be infected last month. A protection zone measuring nearly two miles and a six-mile surveillance zone are already in place following the earlier case, although officials say the threat to humans is “very low”.

Disease

H7N9 avian influenza: China

The China National Health and Family Planning Commission reported an additional 28 human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9), including four deaths, for the period of February 13 to 23. The 22 male and six female patients aged from four to 81 had their onset from January 27 to February 17.

Seoul virus: North America

In a follow-up on the multistate Seoul virus outbreak in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports laboratory-confirmed infection in 16 people in nine states as of Feb. 23.

Disease

Mystery outbreak on São Tomé and Príncipe

An unknown disease that has afflicted some 2,000 people on the African island nation of São Tomé and Príncipe remains a mystery as Portuguese doctors try to figure out the etiology and cure, according to Portugal media.

WHO sent a specialist from Benin because the pathology was similar to a common disease in Africa, particularly in Benin; however, a conclusion has yet to be met.

Earlier this month, media accounts reported the mystery disease may have been Buruli ulcer.

Mumps outbreak reported in Toronto

Toronto Public Health (TPH) is currently investigating 14 lab-confirmed cases of mumps involving individuals 18 to 35 years of age. While TPH continues to follow up with exposed individuals who are known to the confirmed cases, the investigation to date has identified that many of these cases have frequented bars in the west downtown core area.

Human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus – China

On 4 February 2017, Taipei Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported one laboratory-confirmed case of human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus. This is the fifth human case with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus reported from Taipei CDC.

Disease

Seoul virus – United States of America and Canada

On 24 January 2017, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), through their Health Alert Network (HAN) publication, reported 8 cases of infection with Seoul virus in the states of Wisconsin (n=2) and Illinois (n=6). The first two cases were reported in early December 2016, when two home-based pet rat breeders in Wisconsin State developed an acute febrile illness, later confirmed as Seoul virus infection. Rats (Rattus norvegicus) at some facilities also tested positive for Seoul virus. Human infection with Seoul virus is not commonly found in the United States; this virus family also includes Sin Nombre virus, which is the most common hantavirus causing disease in the United States. This is the first known outbreak associated with pet rats in the United States.

Human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus – China

Between 19 January and 14 February 2017, a total of 304 additional laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection have been reported to WHO from mainland China though the China National IHR focal point.

Brazil yellow fever – Update

The Brazilian Ministry of Health, or Ministério da Saúde now puts the confirmed yellow fever death toll at 89.

Through Friday, 263 cases of the disease have been confirmed (Minas Gerais-225, Espírito Santo-34 and São Paulo-4). In all, 1,258 suspected cases were reported, of which 882 remained under investigation and 113 were discarded.

Concerning yellow fever related fatalities, of the 200 reported deaths, 89 were confirmed, 108 are still under investigation and 3 were discarded. Eighty-six percent of the confirmed deaths were reported in Minas Gerais (77).

Disease

Chikungunya Outbreak in the Philippines

Health officials M’lang, North Cotabato on the southern island of Mindanao have declared a chikungunya outbreak after some 50 people contracted the mosquito borne viral disease in the past week.

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease in Vietnam

After reporting about 50,000 hand, foot and mouth disease cases in 2016, Vietnamese health officials with the General Department of Preventive Medicine are warning the public to take protective measures as more than 2100 cases have been seen in 57 localities so far in 2017.

More Bird Flu Cases in China

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today (February 16) received notification from the National Health and Family Planning Commission that 61 additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9), including seven deaths, were recorded from February 6 to 12.

New Antibiotic Discovered

A new antibiotic, produced by bacteria found on a species of African ant, found in Kenya is very potent against antibiotic-resistant ‘superbugs’ like MRSA according to scientists. Researchers at the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the John Innes Centre (JIC) discovered a new member of the Streptomyces bacteria family, isolated from the African fungus-growing plant-ant Tetraponera penzigi.

Disease

Dengue Fever in Cape Verde

For the first time in ten years, the islands of Cape Verde, or Cabo Verde off the coast of western Africa have reported two dozen confirmed dengue fever cases, according to an Observador report.

Cameroon confirms H5N8 bird flu in the north

Cameroon has confirmed a case of the highly contagious H5N8 bird flu virus in the northern part of the country, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said on Wednesday, citing a report from the Cameroonian livestock ministry.

The virus was found early January in exotic peacocks, in village chickens and in ducks, the ministry said.

Disease

Africa yellow fever outbreak declared over

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) declared the end of the yellow fever outbreak in that country today following a similar announcement in Angola on 23 December 2016, bringing an end to the outbreak in both countries after no new confirmed cases were reported from both countries for the past six months.

Cholera in Somalia

The Somalia Ministry of Health reported 913 new suspected cases of cholera, including 10 deaths and a case–fatality rate of 1.1% during the past week. This brings the total since the beginning of the year to 4026 cumulative suspected cases of cholera including 57 deaths (case–fatality rate 1.5%).

China – Bird Flu

Two additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) have been reported on Mainland China.

Disease

Bolivia – Yellow Fever

The Bolivia Ministry of Health has confirmed yellow fever in a 27-year-old male Danish tourist who likely contracted the mosquito borne virus while visiting the jungle, according to a Terra report. This is the first confirmed case in the country in ten years.

Saudi Arabia: MERS case reported in Mecca

The Saudi Arabia Ministry of Health reported an additional infection of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) from a patient in Mecca. The 60-year-old male expatriate is reportedly hospitalized in critical condition. The probable source of the infection is noted as direct contact with camels.

Bird flu hits poultry markets in major Chinese city

Authorities in China’s third-largest city warned that about 30 percent of its live poultry markets were contaminated with the H7N9 avian flu virus, as an eastern province ordered markets to shut, state media reported on Saturday.

East China’s Zhejiang province has ordered all markets across the province to halt live poultry trade on Saturday over bird flu concerns

In January, Zhejiang reported 35 infections of the H7N9 strain of bird flu, according to the provincial Health and Family Planning Commission.

Earlier on Saturday, China Daily said the disease control authority in Guangzhou, capital of the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, urged residents to avoid contact with live poultry after tests in the past week.

Disease

Hong Kong hepatitis A – update:

In a follow-up on the outbreak of hepatitis A cases among men who have sex with men (MSM) positive for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV-positive) in Hong Kong, The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) reports that retrospective investigations into previously reported cases further identified 11 hepatitis A cases among MSM from September 2015 to 2017 as of February 3, bringing the total to 24 cases affecting MSM aged from 22 to 51, with 20 who were known to be positive for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

China reports dozens of additional H7N9 bird flu cases

The National Health and Family Planning Commission in China announced that 45 additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) were recorded from January 30 to February 5. The 31 male and 14 female patients aged from 27 to 83 had their onset from January 16 to February 1.

Chad – Hepatitis E Outbreak

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) reported Wednesday that hepatitis E outbreak is escalating across Am Timan, in the Salamat region of South-Eastern Chad and more help is needed.

MSF identified the first hepatitis E cases five months ago and has treated 885 patients with Acute Jaundice Symptoms (AJS), with numbers increasing to an average of around 60 new cases a week. AJS, which commonly causes the yellowing of the skin and eyes, can indicate if a person has hepatitis E. Since September, 70 patients have confirmed cases of hepatitis E (HEV RDT+), 64 have been hospitalized, and 11 have died, including four pregnant women.

Foot and Mouth Disease in South Korea

The South Korean government has placed the country on highest alert as a second strain of foot-and-mouth disease was confirmed three days after a first outbreak was reported, officials said Thursday.

The A-type strain of foot-and-mouth disease was discovered at a Yeoncheon dairy farm, some 50 miles north of the capital Seoul, where at least 10 cows were found to have contracted the strain, according to food industry policy deputy minister Kim Kyeong-kyu.

After the O-type of the strain was detected southeast of the country, the Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs ministry raised the country’s alert status one level to the maximum. The ministry has since then issued a travel ban for all livestock in South Korea, while ordering tougher quarantine and sterilization protocols