Disease

Malaria increases reported in Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela in 2016

According to a new Pan American Health Organization Epidemiological Alert this week, in 2015, a total of 451,242 malaria cases were reported in the Region of the Americas, representing a 62% decrease in comparison with cases reported in 2000, but representing a 16% increase compared to the cases reported in 2014, the year with the lowest number of malaria cases in the last four decades.

In 2015, eight of the 21 endemic countries (the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Peru) reported an increase in cases compared to the previous year.

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

Lassa Fever – Liberia

Two people from Nimba County, Liberia have died from infections of Lassa fever, according to the Ministry of Health (MOH) last week. Dr. Thomas Nagbe, Disease Prevention and Control head at the MOH said the first three Lassa fever cases were from Nimba, which included two fatalities and one individual who has hospitalized for the past two week. In addition, at least 100 contacts are being observed. Dr. Nagbe is calling Lassa a “major threat” that has now been seen in three counties: Bong, Lofa and Nimba.

Disease

Measles in Spain

Health officials in Catalonia have reported twelve measles cases among young adults in Barcelona, according to a La Vanguardia report. The twelve cases diagnosed so far in the metro Bracelona area are linked to the same original patient, a person who became infected in China in early January.

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

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

Between 10 January and 3 February 2017 the National International Health Regulations Focal Point of Saudi Arabia reported seventeen (17) additional cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) including four (4) fatal cases. Three (3) deaths among previously reported MERS cases (case no. 1 and 2 in DON published on 26 January 2017 and case no. 6 in DON published on 17 January 2017) were also reported.

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

Disease

Anthrax in Zambia – Update

In a follow-up on the anthrax outbreak in Western Province, Zambia, local media report six additional fatalities in the past five days. According to Sikongo Health Director Fredrick Siyunda, the six victims contracted anthrax after eating tainted meat from cattle. This brings the human death toll due to anthrax in Western Province to eight since the outbreak began.

Disease

China reports H7N9 avian flu case in Henan Province

The Health and Family Planning Commission of Henan Province reported an additional human case of avian influenza A(H7N9) in a 38-year-old man from Kaifeng who is in critical condition.

Hong Kong health officials who are closely monitoring the situation said, “Since late 2016, the number of human H7N9 cases reported in the Mainland hugely increased from six in November 2016 to 106 in December 2016 and 183 last month as of January 29, 2017. The number of cases in this wave so far has been much higher than that in the same period last winter. Cases imported from Guangdong have also been reported in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan.

Since the first human cases were reported in 2013, there has been 1107 cases as of Feb. 6.

Disease

Zika Virus – Philippines – Update

As of February 2, 2017, a total of 57 Zika cases were reported in the country. There were 38 (67%) females and 19 (33%) males. Age ranged from 7 years-59 years (median 32 years). Seven of the females were pregnant. There were no deaths.

Zika Virus – Mexico

Mexico registered the first case of microcephaly linked to the Zika virus in a baby who died shortly after birth, according the the Ministry of Health Friday. However, the Health Secretariat noted that it does not rule out that other children may be born with this disease.

Disease

Dengue Fever in Thailand

The Thailand Bureau of Epidemiology has reported nearly 2,300 dengue fever cases since the beginning of the year. The cases have been reported in 68 of the country’s 77 provinces. To date, two dengue related fatalities have been report. Songkla, Pattani, Narathiwat, Pattalung and Yala provinces have seen the highest morbidity rates to date.

Foot and Mouth Disease cases in South Korea

South Korea on Monday confirmed a case of foot-and-mouth at a dairy farm, the first discovery of the disease in the country in nearly a year. It also said there was another suspected case at a different location, although that was yet to be confirmed.

The confirmation comes as Asia’s fourth largest economy has been grappling with a nationwide spread of virulent bird flu virus, leading to the culling of over 30 million farm birds.

Disease

Leprosy in Nepal

The Palpa District Public Health Office (DPHO) reported this week on 13 new leprosy cases in the central Nepal district, according to a Kathmandu Post report. About 16 cases are reported annually in the district.

The number of leprosy patients taking drugs has reached 13 in the district so far and of them eight patients have completed drugs, the DPHO said.

According to the WHO, there were more than 200,000 new cases reported globally in 2015.

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.