Disease

New cholera outbreak flares up in Malawi

Malawi health officials reported a new cholera outbreak in Nsanje district, located in the southern region of Malawi. The outbreak began on Mar. 11 and laboratory testing revealed that the agent was Vibrio cholerae Ogawa O1. As of 24 March 2017, a total of 14 cases with no deaths have been reported.

Lassa fever in West Africa: Outbreaks confirmed in 5 countries

Lassa fever outbreaks have been confirmed across five West African countries, including Nigeria, Benin, Sierra Leone, Togo, and Burkina Faso.

Nigeria – In Nigeria, the index case emerged on 16 December 2016 in Ogun state. Since then, the outbreak has remained active. During the week ending 19 March 2017), 15 suspected cases were reported, with two testing positive for Lassa fever. Between 16 December 2016 and 19 March 2017, a total of 283 suspected cases including 56 deaths (case fatality rate of 19.8%) have been reported. Of the suspected cases, 99 were confirmed by the Lagos University Teaching Hospital Lassa laboratory in Nigeria. The cases have been distributed across 13 states: Ogun, Bauchi, Plateau, Ebonyi, Ondo, Edo, Taraba, Nasarawa, Rivers, Kaduna, Gombe, Cross-River and Borno.

Benin – The outbreak of Lassa fever in Benin started on 12 February 2017 from Tchaourou district, Borgou province, close to the border with Nigeria. It was established that this case had epidemiological link with the ongoing Lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria. On 23 February 2017, another suspected case from L’Atacora province was reported. Samples obtained from the two cases tested positive for Lassa fever in the laboratory in Cotonou, Benin and in the Lagos University Teaching Hospital Lassa laboratory. Both cases died, giving a case fatality of 100%.

Togo – In Togo, Lassa fever was confirmed on 23 February 2017, with the case having established epidemiological linkage to Benin. A total of 12 suspected were subsequently reported, seven of them were confirmed at the Institut National d’Hygiène in Lomé, Togo. Four of the confirmed cases died, giving a case fatality rate of 57%. The cases originated from Oti and Kpendjal districts.

Burkina Faso – On 26 February 2017, the Ministry of Health of Burkina Faso notified WHO of a confirmed Lassa fever case admitted in a hospital in the northern part of Togo. The case originated from Ouargaye district, central eastern part of Burkina Faso. Burkina Faso has not had any other case.

Sierra Leone – Sierra Leone has been reporting sporadic suspected cases of Lassa fever since 28 December 2016. However, the outbreak situation escalated in the months of February and March 2017 when a cluster of 24 cases were reported and investigated. Out of these, four cases were laboratory confirmed and all of them died, thus giving case fatality rate of 100% among the confirmed. The outbreak has since subsided.

Measles in Damascus, Syria

A “major outbreak” of measles is hitting the encircled, rebel-controlled Damascus suburbs of East Ghouta, with doctors telling Syria Direct that vaccine shortages are to blame for more than 350 cases of the easily preventable disease in under two months. As a result, hundreds of East Ghouta children now suffer from dangerously high fevers, severe respiratory issues and, in at least two instances, death.

In patients with access to quality health care, measles can be managed. But for populations with malnutrition and inadequate health care, “mortality can be as high as 10 percent,” the France-based Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations (UOSSM) reported earlier this month. Children affected by measles within East Ghouta face an added risk of serious health complications given the dire food and medical shortages resulting from the opposition-held area’s five-year encirclement.

Disease

Cholera in the Philippines.

Two areas in the Central Visayas are reporting cholera outbreaks, according to a ABS-CBN News report Wednesday. Nearly 200 cases of the serious bacterial infection have been reported from areas of Cebu and Bohol islands.

Health officials say 75 people from Sitio Badjao Bridge, Bohol were hospitalized and treated last week, while on Carnaza Island, Cebu, more than 100 people were affected.

Disease

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever death reported in Namibia

A farmworker from the Omaheke region on the eastern border of Namibia has died from Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF), according to Namibia health officials. According to a report in The Namibian, The unidentified man died on Feb. 22 after being admitted to the Gobabis District Hospital when he vomited blood. He was treated for fever, diarrhoea, and coughing a few days earlier.

Chikungunya in Pakistan

Pakistan’s Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination has reported cases of chikungunya in the country for the first time. A total of 803 cases have been reported since 19 December 2016 in the Sindh province, including 29 cases reported in various towns in Karachi during the week of 10-16 February 2017.

New cholera cases in Haiti

Haiti has reported 1,897 cholera cases through January, according to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO). 28 deaths were reported during this period. Since the cholera outbreak began in October 2010, months after the Jan. 12, 2010 earthquake, 797,691 cholera cases have been reported in Haiti, including 9,439 deaths.

Disease

Cholera Found in Travellers from the Philippines

The Korea Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) issued a warning Friday (computer translated) concerning a cholera outbreak reported in travellers from Cebu, Philippines.

Travellers that arrived Friday, Feb. 17 on Air Asia Z29048 (Cebu – Incheon, Seoul flight) at Incheon International Airport tested positive for cholera (V Cholerae O1 Ogawa, CTX +). The number infected was not disclosed.

Farmers kill thousands of pigs in disease-hit Latvia

Latvia has culled more pigs in the past two weeks than in the last three years, due to African swine fever (ASF) outbreaks. Nearly 15,000 head of pigs were culled as the result of the two recent ASF outbreaks in the country, according to Latvia’s Food and Veterinary Service (SFVS).

On 23 January, SFVS reported an outbreak of ASF at the Rukas farm of local pig manufacturer Ancers, where veterinary inspectors decided to cull the whole pig population of 5,023 head. This outbreak has been identified as the largest one ever in Latvia.

On 7 February, ASF was also detected at the Bunchi farm, which also belongs to Ancers. Here the total pig population was over 10,000 head and SFVS had to destroy the herd completely. Following these outbreaks, the Latvian government has introduced a state of emergency in several districts of the country for the first time since mid-2014.

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

‘Diarrhoea’ outbreak in Sudan is cholera

All reports and symptoms of an outbreak of deadly and acute watery diarrhoea in eastern Sudanese states point to the spread of cholera, according to a Sudanese epidemiology specialist based in the United Kingdom.

The so-called widespread acute watery diarrhoea in El Gedaref and Red Sea is in fact cholera, UK-based epidemiology and infectious diseases specialist Dr Ezzeldin Gamar told Radio Dabanga on Tuesday.

The disease has continued to claim lives over the past five months: there have been a number of deaths and the federal Health Ministry has acknowledged the spread of the “watery diarrhoea epidemic” in eastern Sudan and Khartoum. The Ministry reported that last week that 333 people were suffering from the deadly disease in El Gedaref, Red Sea, and Khartoum states, but did not announce clear measures to contain the disease.

Disease

Zimbabwe suspect typhoid cases top 2000

In the past two-plus months, Zimbabwe has seen an outbreak of typhoid fever that has resulted in more than 2200 suspected cases and at least nine deaths, according to local media. According to Health and Child Care minister David Parirenyetwa, three out of every four cases have been reported in the capital city of Harare.

Central African Republic declares end of cholera and monkeypox outbreaks

On Wednesday, The Minister of Public Health and Population in the Central African Republic (CAR), Fernande Ndjengbot announced the end of the epidemics of cholera and monkeypox in the country. According to the Minister, these two epidemics were mitigated in time after the notification of the last cases registered in September 2016.

The cholera epidemic was declared on August 10, 2016 in the district of Djoukou, Zawara and in the city of Bangui of which 266 cases were registered and 21 deaths. The monkeypox outbreak was declared on 22 September 2016 at Dalakere village, Réou 4 and 5 in the sub-prefecture of Mingala in Lower Kotto, of which 19 cases were recorded.

France Begins Operation to Cull Up to 1M Ducks

French authorities on Thursday began an operation that could see up to 1 million ducks culled from the country’s main foie gras-producing region in an attempt to contain an outbreak of a dangerous bird flu strain. Duck farmers in southwestern France will kill the birds to stem the tide of an outbreak of the H5N8 virus that has been detected in at least 13 other European countries since October. French authorities and duck farmers have engaged in several culls in the past month, but until now those culls have only taken place on farms with infected birds. The cull will affect free-range ducks that may have come in contact with wild birds carrying the virus.

While the virus is extremely harmful to birds, it doesn’t transmit through food and has not been found to affect humans.

Disease

HIV in the Philippines

The Philippines is facing one of the fastest-growing epidemics of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in the Asia-Pacific region. According to official statistics, HIV prevalence among men who have sex with men (MSM) has increased tenfold in the last five years.

The organization has criticized the Philippines government in their effort to get the epidemic under control. HIV prevention education in Philippine schools is woefully inadequate and the commercial marketing of condoms to MSM populations is nonexistent.

The Government has announced the distribution of condoms which will be accompanied with appropriate sex education for adolescents and parental involvement in such program. The distribution will hopefully start next year, specifically in regions with the most number of HIV cases.

Yemen: Cholera

The Ministry of Public Health and Population in Yemen has released the latest figures on cholera cases in the country. Since the last update, 1089 new suspected cases of cholera and 1 additional death have been reported. As of 28 December, a cumulative total of 12 733 suspected cases of cholera, including 97 associated deaths were recorded.

Disease

Cholera in Yemen – Update

The number of cholera cases in Yemen has grown by more than 1200 cases in the past week, bringing the total suspected cases of cholera to 8975, including 89 deaths, according to The Ministry of Public Health and Population Thursday.

Arkansas mumps outbreak tops 2000

The country’s largest statewide mumps outbreak just continues to grow and The Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) reports as of today, 2,042 suspected and lab confirmed cases.

The outbreak is currently affecting 50 workplaces, 33 schools in 3 school districts, 5 colleges/vocational schools, and 1 private school, according to the ADH.

Unnamed

Disease

Yemen – Cholera

The Ministry of Public Health and Population in Yemen has reported additional cases of cholera in Yemen. To date, 7730 suspected cases of cholera, including 82 associated deaths have been reported (case fatality rate of 1.06%). Of these, 122 cases were laboratory-confirmed as Vibrio cholerae 01.

Disease

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Saudi Arabia

Between 3 and 10 November 2016 the National IHR Focal Point of Saudi Arabia reported six (6) additional cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). Two (2) deaths among previously reported MERS cases were also reported.

Haiti – Cholera

The number of cholera cases in Haiti increased to two or more times the numbers observed prior to Hurricane Matthew, which landed on Oct. 4, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) reported today.

Through the end of October, a total of 34,656 suspected cholera cases, including 339 related deaths have been reported in Haiti. Since Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti October 4, more than 5,800 suspected cholera cases have been reported by the Ministry of Health.

Disease

Cholera in Ghana – Update

Health authorities in the Cape Coast are still battling with cholera cases even as they attempt to ban food vending on the campus of the University of Cape Coast.

Over 400 people have been affected by the outbreak since it broke about a month ago. 200 cases have been reported at the University of Cape Coast hospital alone with fears the situation may take a turn to the worse.

Bird Flu in the Netherlands

Some 190,000 ducks were destroyed on Saturday at six farms in the Netherlands following an avian flu outbreak, the country’s first cull in response to an epidemic sweeping northern Europe.

Outbreaks of avian flu, primarily the highly pathogenic H5N8 strain, have been reported in Denmark, Finland, Germany and Sweden over the past week.

Disease

Yemen Cholera – Update

The Ministry of Public Health and Population in Yemen has reported additional cholera cases in the country. To date, 4825 suspected cases of cholera, including 61 associated deaths were reported in Aden, Amran, Al Hudaydah, Al-Bayda‘a, Al-Dhale’a, Ibb, Hajjah, Lahij, Ta’izz, Sana’a City and Sana’a governorates.

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

On 11 November 2016, the National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC) of China notified WHO of two additional cases of laboratory-confirmed human infection with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus.

Disease

Thailand dengue update

The number of dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever cases in Thailand have grown to 54,008 cases with 51 deaths, according to Bureau of Epidemiology data published earlier this week. Dengue fever has affected all 77 Thai provinces with Maehongsorn seeing the highest incidence (388.17 / 100,000 population).

Ghana cholera update

In a follow-up on the cholera outbreak in the Cape Coast region of southern Ghana, as of Nov. 2, the total number of cases had risen to 172 with zero deaths. The exponential increase in cases indicates high transmission potential of infections in the peri urban communities.

Disease

Cholera in Yemen

The country’s Ministry of Public Health and Population is reporting that the number of suspected cholera cases have more than quadrupled in the past two weeks.

According to health officials, a total of 2733 suspected cases and 51 associated deaths have been reported in Ta’iz, Aden, Lahij, Al Hudaydah, Hajjah, Sana’a, Al Bayda, Dhamar and Ibb.

While acute watery diarrheal diseases are endemic in Yemen, the ongoing conflict has stretched the capacity of the national health systems. More than 7.6 million people are currently living in areas affected by the outbreak, as well as more than 3 million internally displaced persons.

Deadly disease outbreak in the US

A frightening “superbug” has emerged in a major outbreak at U.S. hospitals around the country, and authorities are trying to get a handle on the issue. Candida auris, an often-fatal fungus that is resistant to antibiotics, has started popping up at numerous hospitals, prompting warnings from the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention this week.

This is the first time that the fungus has been found in the United States, and it has killed four of the first seven patients confirmed to have the disease. Dr. Thomas Frieden, the director of the CDC, is urging officials to act now to stop the spread of the disease, calling it an “emerging threat.”

C. auris was first identified in Japan back in 2009, and has since spread to a handful of countries across the world, and it now appears to have found its way to the United States.