Philippines: Rabies outbreak

Two people have died from rabies in the town of Cauayan, Negros Occidental province prompting the declaration of an outbreak. The victims, men in their 60s from different villages, died in the past week from rabies post-dog bites.

To make matters worse, the family of one of the victims killed the dog, cooked it and served it to at least 10 people. Some of the ten have received rabies post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) and the provincial veterinarian has launched a massive anti-rabies vaccination and information dissemination campaign.


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.


Washington, USA – Mumps Cases

The Washington State Department of Health (WSDH) has reported 129 mumps cases through Friday, including 111 in King County and twelve in Pierce County. This has prompted health officials to urge the public to ensure they are vaccinated.

Human Rabies cases in Peru

Health officials in the Cusco region in southeastern Peru have reported dozens of suspected human rabies cases in individuals in La Convención province, according to a Publimetro report. Eighty-five people are suspected of having contracted wild rabies after being bitten by bats in the various Amazonian localities of Camana, Mayapo, Puerto Huallana and Alto Pichas.


Sweden no longer rabies free

Researchers from Folkhälsomyndigheten (Sweden’s Public Health) and Uppsala University are reporting that rabid bats are present in the southern areas of the country, saying Sweden is no longer rabies free. They studied and analyzed saliva and blood samples from bats over six years and found that of the 450+ bats tested, 14 had rabies specific antibodies in their blood.

H7N9 avian influenza: China

The Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission reported five additional human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) on the Mainland


Leptospirosis kills four in Udupi, India

Four deaths have recently been attributed to leptospirosis in the Coastal Karnataka city of Udupi, causing fear among the population. Health officials are currently trying to ease the tension among the public by creating awareness programs about the bacterial disease.

Leptospirosis is caused by a corkscrew-shaped bacterium called Leptospira interrogans, is often referred to as “rat fever” due to the principal role rats play in spreading the disease.

Australia: Cats found carrying superbug

The first evidence of a superbug in a domestic cat that could infect humans and livestock has been discovered in Australia.

The Salmonella strain is resistant to carbapenems, a drug used as the last line of defence in Australian hospitals. Experts believe this resistance may pose a serious threat to public health. This is the first time that a Salmonella strain with resistance to most antimicrobial drugs has been reported in any Australian domestic animal and it is a significant concern to public health.

Thailand teenagers dig up rabid dog and eat it

In what is clearly one of the most bizarre and potentially tragic stories today, 13 teenagers in Thailand’s Northeast province of Mukdahan dug up a dog that was buried and ate it, not aware all along, the animal was put down by officials because it was rabid.

The dog was killed because it had attacked a number of locals recently. The teens were sent to Mukdahan Hospital for rabies post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP). Eating dog meat is considered taboo in most of Thailand.


Rabies in Vietnam

Vietnamese health officials say they have seen 49 human rabies deaths to date in 2016, according to local media, with 80 percent of the mortality being reported from the northern mountainous region.

Like in most countries, the vast majority of cases are due to bites from rabid cats and dogs. In fact, Vietnam sees around 400,000 such animal bites annually.


H1N1 influenza outbreak at Vietnam factory

Scores of employees at a garment factory in the southern province of Kien Giang, Vietnam have tested positive for H1N1 influenza, prompting health officials to ask the factory to take preventive measures against further spread, according to a local media report. 117 of the nearly 1,000 employees tested positive according to the Ho Chi Minh City Pasteur Institute.

Rabies in the Philippines

The Philippines struggles with human rabies cases, ranking number 10 among the top countries with human rabies deaths. During the first six months of 2016, the Philippines province of Pangasinan have reported 14,390 animal bite cases and 14 human rabies deaths.


Rabies in Johannesburg – South Africa

There have been five confirmed rabies cases in jackals and a dog in Muldersdrift, Kromdraai and Lanseria in the past month, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases says.

At least two cases in humans were reported, and both people received medical treatment.

While jackals play an important role in the ecosystem, jackal rabies is well documented in South Africa. Periodic increases in cases are reported, and in the past year, jackal rabies has been reported from North West and KwaZulu-Natal.

Rabies is fatal unless treatment is immediately given to the infected person.


Ethiopia reports measles and diphtheria outbreaks

The country of the Horn of Africa is currently battling outbreaks in two vaccine-preventable diseases, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

To date, 2,190 suspected measles cases were reported in 61 separate outbreaks in Ethiopia, of which 929 cases were confirmed positive. The majority of the cases were from Nejo and Nole woredas of West Wellega zone (Oromia) and Kola Tembien woreda of Central Tigray zone (Tigray). Twenty eight per cent of cases were children under-5 and 33 per cent of those affected were above 15 years of age.

In addition to measles, an outbreak of diphtheria was reported in Alle and Konso woredas (SNNPR) on 25 February. As of 7 March, there were 31 suspected cases and six deaths. Investigations to determine the extent of the outbreak are on-going.

Rabies in Nepal

Officials report a 12-year old boy died of furious rabies during treatment at Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital in Kathmandu, Nepal.

The patient was bitten by an unknown stray dog (puppy) in the tip of the index finger. The wound was unnoticeable and hence the boy did not inform his parents about the incident. Signs of furious rabies appeared 20 days after the bite. He died one day after his admission to this hospital. It was the 2nd fatal case of rabies in this hospital within a week.


Measels in the USA

New York City is currently grappling with a measles outbreak. Health officials have identified 16 cases of the highly contagious infectious disease, resulting in at least six hospitalizations, and are now warning unvaccinated individuals that they need to get their shots.

And New York isn’t the only place where measles — which was once so rare that it was virtually eradicated in the U.S. back in 2000 — is cropping up again. Within the past two months, health officials have also identified cases in the Boston, San Francisco, San Diego, and Dallas areas. Measles have also recently been reported in suburban areas in Connecticut and Illinois.

Just one case of measles can pose a huge public health threat, since it has the potential to be transmitted quickly. It can spread through the air when an infected individual coughs or sneezes. For instance, last month, thousands of California commuters were potentially exposed to the disease after an unvaccinated man with the measles rode public transportation.

Many of the measles outbreaks here in the U.S. originate after an unvaccinated individual has traveled abroad and contracted the disease there. Then, when they return to this country, they can spread measles among pockets of other unvaccinated people.

Officials say the underlying problem is that parents are not vaccinating their children.

Philippines: South Cotabato Declares Rabies Outbreak

In the aftermath of a human rabies death in Sto. Nino town in South Cotabato, Mindanao, provincial health officials declared a rabies outbreak.

Officials have launched a massive anti-rabies vaccination among pet animals in Barangay Poblacion of Sto. Nino in a bid to prevent the possible spread of the disease to other areas after a 44 year old man died of rabies.

Though a relatively rare cause of death in developed countries, 55,000 people die globally from this dreaded disease, mostly in Africa and Asia. That’s at a rate of one person every 10 minutes.


Rabies outbreak jumps species in Taiwan

Health authorities on the island have been battling to contain a rabies outbreak among so-called ferret-badgers, with at least 18 cases among the weasel-like animals confirmed so far.

On Wednesday officials confirmed the disease had spread to a shrew, fuelling fears that it could mutate further to affect domestic pets – greatly increasing the risk to humans.


Rabies in Taiwan

In recent weeks, rabies has emerged in Taiwan, around 80 wild Formosan ferret-badgers have been found dead and there has also been a case in which a man was bitten by a rabid Formosan ferret-badger.

These are all signs that rabies, which had been wiped out in Taiwan for more than 50 years, is spreading throughout the country.

Cyclospora Outbreak USA – Update

The multistate Cyclospora outbreak increased by 36 cases since yesterday’s update to a total of 321 cases, according to the Centres for Disease Control.