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October 21, 2021
Germany: African Swine Fever
African swine fever (ASF) is advancing further west in Germany. On Oct. 13, the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut [FLI] confirmed a case in a hunted wild boar in Saxony. The wild boar was killed on the weekend 10 km north of Dresden. The epidemic is located more than 100 km west of the German-Polish border. It is only 100 km to Thuringia and Saxony-Anhalt.
This is the first time that Saxony has had an ASF case in wild boars outside the Görlitz district. So far, ASF has been identified in more than 500 wild boars there. From the current case near Radeburg to the exclusion zone in the Görlitz district (endangered area), it is almost 55 kilometers.
In Saxony, the ASF crisis team is now meeting at the Ministry of Social Affairs. Among other things, a decision will be made on the delimitation of the restriction zones to be set up. Details are not yet available. Saxony extended the obligation to examine all shot healthy wild boars since the end of September. Earlier, such measure was restricted to the districts of Görlitz and Bautzen. At present, this measure is obligatory also in the districts of Meissen, Saxon Switzerland-Eastern Ore Mountains, and on the territory of the state capital Dresden.
With the latest case, the total number of ASF cases identified in Brandenburg and Saxony for a year has risen to 2,500. Fortunately, there have only been 3 cases in domestic pig herds so far. With the added Meissen district, a total of 8 districts are now affected. In the past 14 days alone, the Friedrich Loeffler Institute confirmed 69 ASF cases in wild boars.
Japan: Japanese Encephalitis
Oita Prefecture announced on Oct. 13 that a woman in Kunisaki City developed Japanese encephalitis and died. This is the first time that deaths due to Japanese encephalitis have been confirmed in the prefecture since 2006 when statistics began.
According to the prefecture, the woman was hospitalized with a fever on Sept. 12 and died Sept. 29. She was diagnosed by a post-mortem examination when the Eastern Health Center was contacted.
According to the Prefectural Infectious Disease Control Division, [arthropod-borne] infectious diseases can be caused by mosquito-borne viruses. They do not spread from person to person. Vaccination can reduce the chance of developing the disease by 75-95%.
The health services of the Misdalah district east of Bouira have appealed to the heads and residents of its municipalities to avoid the acquisition and consumption of milk and all its derivatives of unknown source and offered for sale on the roads and some shops, in order to avoid infection with brucellosis, from which several confirmed cases of infection were recorded in the population.
The announcement published by the neighborhood's health services in Hanif stated that, according to the detection of a confirmed case of human brucellosis for a person living in the village of Texiridan. In the village, from the municipality of Al-Shorfa, epidemiological investigations conducted by the services confirmed that the cause of infection is the acquisition and consumption of fresh milk from several shops in the region.
Therefore, according to the same services, mayors of municipalities must intensify supervision to prevent the spread of the disease, and the residents of the region should avoid getting or consuming milk and all its derivatives of animal origin of unknown origin, especially those offered for sale on the roads or in public places without supervision, as well as some shops. This should be done in order to protect their private and public health due to the health symptoms that the disease causes, which may lead to death, in addition to the fear of the infection spreading more among them, whether by consuming these materials, especially unboiled milk, or by direct contact with the blood of infected animals such as sheep, sheep and goats.
Mozambican health authorities announced an outbreak of cholera in the district of Caia, Sofala province, in the center of the country. The outbreak has already caused 160 cases with no deaths recorded.
The first suspicions arose in late August, Justino Antonio, district director of health services in Caia told Radio Mozambique.
A team of technicians from the provincial health department is investigating the origin of the outbreak, which only occurs at the district headquarters, while local services have installed tents to treat the sick. "We have 3 tents installed, one for more serious cases," explained the person in charge. At the same time, there is distribution of products for water treatment and awareness of the use of latrines.
United States: Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease
The presence of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) has been confirmed in Vermont for the first time in state history. Several deer in Rutland County were recently discovered dead from the viral disease. The county is in the north-central part of the state and to the east of the Adirondack Park in New York, which has been hit hard this autumn by a massive outbreak of EHD. Officials in Massachusetts and other northeast states are monitoring for any cases of the disease while hoping for a hard frost to kill the biting midges that spread it.
The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department (VFWD) said the EHD cases so far have been confined to the towns of Castleton and West Haven in a press release. The agency notes that "although [the cases] are likely related to more widespread outbreaks occurring in New York. The majority of Rutland County and the rest of Vermont appear not to have been affected by EHD." The disease was confirmed in 7 counties in New York in September, and NY Department of Environmental Conservation officials have been investigating cases in a total of 28 counties statewide.
EHD is spread by tiny, biting midges also known as "no-see-ums." Multiple strains, or serotypes, of the virus do exist. Whitetails infected with one strain may survive and become more resistant to that strain but not to a different one. Once infected, deer often die within 36-48 hours.
United States: Legionellosis
The Nassau County, NY, Department of Health is looking into a Legionnaires' disease outbreak on Long Island. There are 10 reported cases in a one-mile radius. All of the cases were discovered within the past 2 weeks.
The Legionella bacteria are found naturally in the environment and are transmitted by aerosolized water. People can get Legionnaires' disease when breathing in a mist or vapor containing the bacteria, most commonly from cooling towers, fountains, spray parks, hot tubs, whirlpool spas, showers, and faucets. The bacteria are not spread from person to person.
Those who are 50 years of age or older are at a higher risk of becoming ill with Legionnaires' disease, as well as current or former smokers, those with chronic lung disease, those with a weakened immune system, and people who take immunosuppressant medications.
Arvandkenar district governor said that the cause of death of a number of large livestock in one of the villages of Nasar district of Arvandkenar district is being investigated. In an interview with IRNA on Oct. 14, Sadegh Jalali stated: "After learning about the death of heavy cattle in one of the villages, the issue was investigated in the field with the coordination of the district and department of veterinary medicine." He added, "In the initial investigation, it was found that the cause of death of these animals was due to a disease and has nothing to do with the water of the area."
Jalali said: "So far, exact statistics on the number of lost animals are not available and the issue is under further investigation."
In an interview with IRNA, the head of Abadan Veterinary department stated that the cause of death of large cattle in Nasar village was Charbon (Anthrax) disease and added that the necessary action to vaccinate cattle in the region is on the agenda. Assadollah Abbasi added: "Currently, veterinary groups are specially vaccinating the animals of the residents up to a certain radius in the region by preparing a vaccine." He added: "200 doses of vaccine will be prepared for injection and will be injected into the cattle of the region by Oct. 15."
Australia: Hendra Virus
A new variant of the dangerous Hendra virus has been confirmed in a horse during routine surveillance in New South Wales, Australia.
Researchers recently discovered the new variant in historical samples, and a new test is now available nationally to identify it.
Researchers with the science agency CSIRO and the University of Sydney investigated laboratory samples from horses previously suspected of having Hendra virus but had all tested negative.
"They found evidence of a novel virus, later confirmed as a new variant and have now developed a diagnostic tool specific to detect it," said David Littleproud, the Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia.
"The research and now this detection highlights the geographic distribution of Hendra virus-carrying bats is likely much greater than once thought."
Science and Technology Minister Melissa Price said the new test would significantly reduce infection risks for veterinarians and frontline equine workers.
Zambia: Typhoid Fever
Health officials in Zambia confirmed an outbreak of suspected typhoid in Lusaka, the country's capital. Residents of mostly shanty compounds of the Zambian capital have of late complained of diarrhea cases, forcing the health authorities to conduct tests.
Minister of Health Sylvia Masebo said environmental and water analysis has revealed fecal contamination of water in some shanty compounds in the city. She said in a release that health authorities have since heightened active surveillance-reporting cases and engaged the water and sanitation firm to manage the problem.
The ministry, she said, has also received 6,000 bottles of liquid chlorine from the Zambia Red Cross to be distributed to the affected areas, as well as intensified water quality monitoring. "We continue to urge all households to ensure that they practice safe food and water hygiene practices more so during this time of year in order to avoid diseases," she said.
Last July, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of the Balearic Islands officially confirmed the presence of bluetongue serotype 4 on the island of Mallorca, after which the Government decided to start a vaccination campaign against the disease.
Since the first outbreak of bluetongue was detected, outbreaks have been reported in different areas of the island of Mallorca. However, the last 2 outbreaks have been located, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA), on the island of Ibiza .
This presents the detection of the bluetongue for the first time in Ibiza since the disease returned to the archipelago in 2021.
The 2 outbreaks detected on the island of Ibiza occurred in the municipalities of Sant Joan de Labritja and Sant Antoni de Portmany, in 2 sheep farms, affecting a total of 7 animals .
Regarding the bluetongue vaccination campaign, which began in July, the Balearic government estimates that before the end of the year, more than 200,000 sheep and 16,000 cows (breeding animals) will have been vaccinated against the disease. Thus, the campaign is nearing completion. In fact, at the end of September they reported that more than 80% of the islands' cattle had already been vaccinated.
United States: Leptospirosis
Rats have been terrorizing New Yorkers even more than usual this year , teaming up in clan warfare during the food-scarce days of strict Covid lockdowns and harassing sidewalk diners once the city began opening up.
And this year, more New Yorkers have been falling seriously ill from a rare but potentially fatal bacterial disease called leptospirosis, which is spread through exposure to rats, and specifically through contact with rat urine or contaminated water.
Last month, the city's health department reported 14 cases of leptospirosis -- an unusually high number since just New York has documented a total of 57 cases in the 15 years since 2006 -- and alerted healthcare providers to be on the lookout for symptoms. Of the first 14 cases, 13 people were hospitalized with acute renal and hepatic failure, and one person died as a result of an infection, the alert said. Last week, there was a 15th case. That person appears to have recovered, the health department told Insider.
The disease is treatable with antibiotics and some people won't experience any symptoms, though 1 in 10 cases progress to severe complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Every year, there are roughly 150 cases of leptospirosis nationwide, according to the CDC, with most cases occurring in Puerto Rico and Hawaii.
India: Scrub Typhus
The Vindhya region has reported 200 cases of scrub typhus so far this year. However, viral and seasonal diseases are on decline, according to doctors at Shyam Shah Medical College hospital, Rewa. As per doctors, certain deaths too have been reported among scrub typhus affected patients. However, they attributed the deaths to comorbidities.
Scrub typhus cases are on the rise in Vindhya region. It leads to multiple organ failure. Viral disease is on decline, said Dr. Naresh Bajaj, head of pediatric department at the hospital attached to Shyam Shah Medical College in Rewa.
As for its prevention, no vaccine is available to prevent scrub typhus. People are advised to reduce risk of contracting the disease by avoiding contact with infected chiggers. When traveling to areas where scrub typhus is common, avoid areas with lots of vegetation and brush where chiggers may be found.
The scrub typhus symptoms are similar to dengue. Its symptoms are fever and chills, headache, body ache and muscle pain, a dark, scab-like region at the site of the chigger bite (also known as eschar), mental changes ranging from confusion to coma, enlarged lymph nodes, rashes, etc.
Two cases of legionellosis were found at the Sinigo elementary school [Trentino-South Tyrol region]. Since the infection is transmitted via aerosol (through the droplets present in the water vapor), the use of the showers has been suspended and the air conditioning system closed.
The health department has carried out water samples; the analyses are still in
India: Japanese Encephalitis
According to the civil surgeon's office in Patna, a child from the city outskirts village of Pandarak died due to Japanese encephalitis Oct. 5.
The child was admitted to the NICU ward of Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH). Another child from the Karauta village near Bakhtiyarpur was also found positive with Japanese encephalitis. He was also admitted to the PMCH.
Japanese encephalitis virus is endemic in north eastern India, including Bihar state, and cases occur there annually. Although there have been fewer cases of acute encephalitis syndrome and Japanese Encephalitis in Bihar state this year than in previous years, these 2 cases indicate that Japanese encephalitis virus continues to be transmitted in that state.
The widespread immunization program in 35 of the 38 districts reported earlier doubtless has played a role in JE case reduction.
A case of Ebola has been reported in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The official confirmation is pending. The case is stated to be a 2 year old in a densely-populated neighborhood of the city of Beni, one of the epicenters of the 2018-2020 outbreak. Three of the baby's neighbors presented symptoms consistent with Ebola in September 2021 and then died, however, none were tested for the virus.
It was not immediately known if the case was related to the 2018-2020 outbreak that killed more than 2,200 people in eastern Congo, or the flare-up that killed 6 this year.
South America: Yellow Fever
In 2021, three countries in the Region of the Americas (Brazil, Peru, and Venezuela) have reported confirmed yellow fever cases. In 2020, two countries in the Region of the Americas reported confirmed cases of yellow fever: Bolivia and Peru. A situation summary of the countries that reported confirmed yellow fever cases in 2021 is provided below.
A reemergence of the yellow fever virus has been reported in the extra-Amazonian region of Brazil since 2014. The expansion of the historical area of yellow fever transmission to areas previously considered not at risk led to two waves of transmission -- one during the 2016-2017 seasonal period, with 778 confirmed human cases including 262 deaths, and another during the 2017-2018 seasonal period, with 1,376 confirmed human cases including 483 deaths. As a result, Brazil changed their yellow fever vaccination recommended areas to include the entire country.
During the seasonal period (2020-2021) between July 2020 and April 2021, a total of 287 suspected human cases were reported, 8 of which (3.4%) were confirmed, 47 (16%) are under investigation, and 235 (82%) were discarded. All confirmed cases, which included 3 fatal cases, were reported in the state of Santa Catarina. Of the total confirmed cases were ages ranging between 34 to 61 years and 4 cases with no vaccination history.
"Bluetongue is out of control, so much so that we are witnessing an exponential growth of the disease, which yesterday recorded 684,000 animals involved with 1,913 outbreaks and 9,388 deaths, in continuous and rapid growth". This was underlined by the president of Copagri Sardegna, Ignazio Cirronis, in whose opinion "the responsibilities of the Department of Health, which decided to derogate from the obligations established by its own decree of Feb. 25, 2016 relating to the vaccine prophylaxis plan, are serious. it is deemed not to be fully applied within the established time frames."
"We consider it very serious" -- continues Cirronis -- "that a dangerous state of malfunctioning of the chain of command in the field of animal health remains; to date, in fact, no decision has been taken to purchase the necessary vaccines, already quantified, and there is no coordination between the departments of Agriculture and Health, which should proceed by mutual agreement and involve agricultural organizations together".
United States: Shigellosis
The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency is monitoring an outbreak of at least 6 cases of shigellosis in individuals experiencing homelessness since Sept. 30. The cases were found after the individuals were hospitalized. They are expected to recover.
The County has notified the City of San Diego and will work with the city and potential exposure sites and homeless service providers to ensure good hygienic precautions, identify any additional cases and connect ill individuals to treatment and housing. A health advisory to local providers also has also been issued.
"Shigellosis is not usually serious, but in the wrong circumstances it can spread, and we want to ensure this vulnerable population is kept safe," said Seema Shah, M.D., medical director of HHSA's Epidemiology and Immunization Services branch.
Shigellosis is a contagious infection typically spread by contaminated surfaces, food or water, or sometimes person-to-person such as men who have sex with men (MSMs). In 2020, the County identified 243 total cases; to date in 2021, the County has identified 220.
A total of 20 people have been reportedly killed by a cholera outbreak in Adamawa State, Nigeria,, while 16 others are battling for their lives presently from the epidemic. SaharaReporters learned that the deadly disease, currently ravaging Gbalang town, in the Numan Local Government Area, has brought panic to the residents. Residents of the community called on Governor Ahmadu Fintiri, to urgently address the raging epidemic.
A youth leader in the Gbalang community, Umar Sadau, told SaharaReporters that 20 people, including women and children, had died after contracting the disease. Saidu further disclosed that 16 others were receiving medical treatment at the Numan General Hospital and Gbalang Dispensary.
He said, "The disease (cholera) which is currently ravaging the community has taken its toll. When a victim comes down with cholera, they die within hours, and sometimes the following day. So far, we've buried 20 corpses, all victims of the disease, and 16 others are in the hospital right now."
Confirming the incident, the Director, Public Health in the state Ministry of Health, Dr. Laori Celine, said cholera was reported from the Numan area. She said, "Our records have shown 15 cases of the cholera outbreak and one dead in Numan LGA. And interventions such as the provision of Aqua tabs, awareness on hygiene are being given. We also engaged some NGOs to support us in reaching out to the affected communities."
October 7, 2021
Nigeria: Yellow Fever
Since September 2017, yellow fever cases have been reported across several states in Nigeria. From Between Jan. 1 and Sept. 1, a total of 1,312 suspected cases were reported in 367 local government areas (LGAs) across 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
A total of 45 blood samples were sent to the Institut Pasteur in Dakar (IPD) and 31 samples tested positive by plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT). Of these 31 PRNT-positive cases, 12 cases had a history of yellow fever vaccination. Among the remaining 19 non-vaccinated PRNT-positive cases, 2 deaths were reported (case fatality ratio: 11%). These 19 PRNT-positive cases were reported from Enugu (7 cases), Anambra (3 cases), Benue (3 cases), Delta (2 cases), Oyo (2 cases), Niger (one case) and Osun (one case) states. Investigations into the PRNT-positive cases are ongoing.
Nigeria has documented gaps in population immunity against yellow fever. According to WHO-UNICEF 2020 estimates, the national immunization coverage for yellow fever was 54% in 2020, which is below the threshold of 80% necessary to protect against outbreaks. In the 9 states reporting PRNT-positive cases, the routine immunization coverage declined between 2018 and 2020 and was below 80% in 2020. These states include Anambra, Benue, Delta, Enugu, Imo, Niger, Ondo, Osun and Oyo. There are 6 states that reported coverage below 50% (Anambra, Delta, Enugu, Imo, Osun, and Oyo states).
Between 2019 and 2020, preventive mass vaccination campaigns were conducted in 6 (all LGAs) of the 9 states. Coverage was reported to be high (more than 90%) in Delta and Ondo states but lower (less than 80%) in Anambra, Benue, Niger, Osun and Oyo states. Additionally, in Enugu State, 9 of 17 LGAs organized reactive mass vaccination campaigns in 2020, while in Imo State, mass vaccination activities have not been organized in recent years.
China: Avian Influenza
A 26-year-old woman in southern China has died of H5N6 bird flu amid a rise in isolated cases, health officials in Hong Kong reported on Sept. 29. Three other cases were reported earlier this month.
The Hong Kong Department of Health said it was notified about the case in Guilin, a city in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region in mainland China. There was no immediate word from local officials.
The health department said the 26-year-old woman had contact with live domestic poultry before she developed symptoms on Aug. 14. She was admitted to hospital 5 days later and has since died.
It was not immediately clear why the case had not been previously reported to the public. The World Health Organization (WHO) did not immediately respond to request for comment.
Only 46 human cases of H5N6 bird flu have been confirmed since the first case in 2014, but nearly 1/4 of them have been reported during the last 2.5 months. At least 22 cases, all but one of them in China, were reported during the last year.
Brazil: West Nile Virus
The 17th Regional Health of Paraná, headquartered in Londrina [Paraná state], reported that a case of West Nile fever had been recorded in a mule in the city of Porecatu. The technical note corfirming the presence of the disease was issued by Adapar (Agricultural Defense Agency of Paraná). The State Health Secretariat (Sesa) reported that it has been investigating suspected cases in humans and other possible cases of infection in animals in the municipalities of Lupionópolis and Florestópolis, also in the north of the state.
West Nile fever is a viral infection caused by an arbovirus hosted by a mosquito; arboviruses also cause dengue, Zika, and chikungunya. Transmission is through the bite of infected mosquitoes, mainly of the genus Culex. The natural hosts are wild birds, which act as virus amplifiers and sources of infection for mosquitoes. Humans, horses, and other primates can be infected.
According to Sesa, in humans, 80% of those infected have no symptoms. Among the symptomatic, West Nile virus (WNV) usually causes fever, headache, tiredness, and body, eye, and headaches. In severe cases, the central nervous system may be involved. According to Sesa, in humans, suspicious cases are those of people with "unspecific acute febrile illness, accompanied by neurological manifestations compatible with meningitis, encephalitis, and acute flaccid paralysis, of unknown etiology". In less than 1% of human cases of infection, there is encephalitis or meningitis, with neck stiffness, mental confusion, or epileptic seizures.
Brazil: Yellow Fever
Municipalities of northern Minas Gerais have been compelled to monitor the occurrence of yellow fever cases. These actions were sparked after monkey deaths due to yellow fever were observed in Ubaí and Icaraí in August 2021.
Samples of organs of howler monkeys found dead in Luislândia are still being analysed at a Fundação Ezequiel Dias (FUNED) laboratory in Belo Horizonte. There were also deaths in Serra das Araras, Chapada Gaúcha, although without confirmation of yellow fever diagnosis.
The monitoring actions by the state secretary of health of Minas Gerais have been ongoing since Sept. 20. The investigation involves health officials of Montes Claros, of FUNED, of Januária and of Varginha.
Teams of technicians, accompanied by staff from the municipalities, traveled around rural areas collecting mosquitoes that are potential vectors of the disease. If dead monkeys are found, they will be tested for yellow fever.
In the Ternopil zoo, a pony died of anthrax on the territory of the aviary. Today the anthrax infection was confirmed by Kyiv veterinarians. Employees who came in the morning to feed the zoo animals, finding a dead pony, immediately reported the case to the Ternopil City Veterinary Hospital.
"Specialists from the hospital and the Ternopil Regional State Laboratory of the State Service of Ukraine for Food Safety and Consumer Protection went to the scene. During the necropsy of the animal, signs of pneumonia, gastroenteritis and lymphadenitis were found, and the enlargement and rounding of the edges of the spleen aroused suspicion of anthrax," the State Food and Consumer Service of Ternopil region reported.
To confirm anthrax infection, specialists took samples of the spleen, liver, heart and lymph nodes. This material was sent to the regional state laboratory of the State Food and Consumer Services. After the necropsy, "The carcass of a pony was removed by incineration, about which a relevant act was drawn up and a photograph was taken. The burnt remains were buried, and the burial place and the transport by which the corpse was transported were disinfected," the Ternopil State Food and Consumer Service reported.
Venezuela: Yellow Fever
The death of araguatos, or howler monkeys, has previously been reported in Monagas and Anzoategui.
A total of 10 confirmed epizootics of non-human primates (araguato monkeys) have been reported in Venezuela: 7 in Monagas and 3 in Anzoategui, with 2 confirmed by PCR laboratory (both from Edo Monagas) and 8 confirmed by epidemiological link.
Yellow fever vaccination coverage for Venezuela is 75%, and 78% in Monagas.
These are the first cases that have been reported since November 2019, when an indigenous Pemon was infected in Bolivar state.
Yellow fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic fever. Symptoms of yellow fever (fever, chills, headache, backache, and muscle aches) develop 3-6 days after infection. About 15% of people infected with yellow fever virus will develop severe illness that can lead to liver disease, bleeding, shock, organ failure, yellowing skin (jaundice), and sometimes death. Diagnosis is based on symptoms, laboratory testing, and travel history. Yellow fever virus spreads through the bites of infected mosquitoes.
Mongolia: Foot and Mouth Disease
At least 7,681 head of livestock of 85 herders have been infected with the deadly foot and mouth disease (FMD) in the central Mongolian province of Uvurkhangai [Ovorhangay, Ovorkhangai], the provincial veterinary department said Oct. 4. The viral infectious disease has spread in the province via livestock of herders who have returned home from the east of the country.
Due to a drought in Uvurkhangai this summer, many herders in the province have moved to the east, which has rich grass, to fatten their livestock.
High-risk animals are being vaccinated against the FMD to curb and prevent its spread. So far this year , the highly contagious disease, which spreads among cloven-hoofed animals such as cattle, sheep, and pigs, has broken out in more than half of Mongolia's 21 provinces, according to the country's General Authority for Veterinary Services.
The livestock sector, with around 70 million head, is a main pillar of the Mongolian economy. The landlocked country, with a population of some 3.4 million, is striving to develop its livestock sector by raising meat exports in a bid to diversify its mining-dependent economy, while frequent outbreaks of livestock diseases such as FMD are impeding the process.The country's meat exports have been suspended since June  due to infectious animal diseases, according to the Mongolian National Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Japan: Yezo Virus
A novel virus that can be transmitted by tick bites has been discovered in Japan. Dubbed Yezo virus (YEZV), it can cause fever and other symptoms in humans.
A case of the mysterious disease was recorded in 2019 after a 41-year-old man was admitted to a hospital with symptoms, including fever and leg pain, Hokkaido University noted in a news release. The man was bitten by an "arthropod believed to be a tick", but tests revealed he was not infected with any of the known viruses carried by ticks in the region.
Although the man was discharged from the hospital after 2 weeks, another case of the disease was reported a year later with the patient displaying similar symptoms.
Septemeber 30, 2021
Iraq: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever
Health officials in Iraq are reporting the death of a person working as a butcher in Mosul city due to infection with Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF), according to a Shafaq News report.
The Director of the Veterinary Hospital, Dr. Uday Al-Abadi, said that quarantine was imposed on a number of people who had been in contact with the deceased in a hospital. He added that "we have fogged the meat market in Ras Al-Jada, on the right side of Mosul, because the butcher works there, and we hope that no new cases will be recorded."
The mayor of Mosul, Zuhair Al-Araji, said this case is the first of its kind recorded in Mosul. He pointed out that this is an issue of great concern and authorities will impose strict penalties on any butcher who slaughters livestock outside the authorized slaughterhouse. He explained that the penalties would reach prison and the imposition of financial fines to prevent the spread of CCHF in the city of Mosul.
Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is a widespread disease caused by a tick-borne virus of the Bunyaviridae family. The CCHF virus causes severe viral hemorrhagic fever outbreaks, with a case fatality rate of 10%-40%.
The World Health Organization (WHO) reported 69 additional suspected monkeypox cases in the past month in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), bringing the cumulative total since the beginning of the year to 8,849.
In addition, 3 more deaths were recorded, bringing the monkeypox death for 2021 to 69.
In 2020, DRC saw a total of 6,257 suspected cases including 229 deaths (CFR 3.7%) reported in 133 health zones from 17 out of 26 provinces in the country.
According to the CDC, the symptoms of monkeypox are as follows: About 12 days after people are infected with the virus, they will get a fever, headache, muscle aches, and backache; their lymph nodes will swell; and they will feel tired. 1 to 3 days (or longer) after the fever starts, they will get a rash. This rash develops into raised bumps filled with fluid and often starts on the face and spreads, but it can start on other parts of the body too. The bumps go through several stages before they get crusty, scab over, and fall off. The illness usually lasts for 2 to 4 weeks.
Namibia: Foot and Mouth Disease
Namibia has detected a new strain of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in the country, the agriculture minister said in a statement on Sept. 23.
"It is important to highlight that the new FMD serotype O also causes clinical cases in goats and sheep and they can spread the disease further to other susceptible animals," Minister Carl Schlettwein said in a statement.
The susceptibility of small ruminants is of significance for Namibia's current FMD prevention and control activities. According to the above OIE report, vaccination in response to the outbreaks has been undertaken in the affected compartment.
In a follow-up on a report 2 weeks ago, on Aug. 29, in the Itasy region, Arivonimamo health district, an alert was received by the health authorities regarding cases of pulmonary plague. As of Sept. 16, a total of 38 suspected cases of pulmonary plague including 19 confirmed and 6 death cases are reported so far.
Active case finding, chemoprophylaxis for high-risk contacts of alive and death cases are ongoing, as well as regular meetings of the plague control committees at regional and health district level, mass sensitization activities, contact tracing, ongoing investigation, as well as vector and anti-reservoir control measures.
Pneumonic plague is the most serious form and is the only form that can be spread from person to person. Pneumonic plague can develop from inhaling infectious droplets or may develop from untreated bubonic or septicemic plague.
Bathing pools at the Ulu Bendul Recreational Park were closed to the public after 3 individuals who visited the area fell ill. All 3, who have since been warded at the Tuanku Ja'afar Hospital, came down with fever, vomiting and diarrhea after visiting the popular park. Two are believed to have leptospirosis, while the third may have a rotavirus infection.
Kuala Pilah District Council chief Mohd Faizal Abdul Manap said the closure would also allow the authorities to carry out maintenance work in the area. "We decided to close following advice from the state health authorities. We regret the inconvenience," he said.
Earlier, state health director Datin Dr. Harlina Abdul Rashid said the authorities were still probing the cases. "Based on the symptoms, we suspect 2 individuals have come down with leptospirosis, or rat urine disease, and another with rotavirus. Prior to falling ill, all 3 had all visited the recreational park," she said. Dr. Harlina said health authorities have also carried out a risk assessment and taken samples from the park.
The Government of Navarra has registered a case of tularemia in a forestry worker in the Leitza area, who had to be admitted to hospital, where he tested positive. The autonomous community had not reported new cases of this disease for years. In fact, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, the only autonomous community that was seriously affected in recent years of the last decade was Castile-Leon, which in 2014 suffered a score of cases during an outbreak of this infection.
Tularemia is a zoonotic disease, that is, it is an animal infection transmissible to humans. Fundamentally, it affects lagomorphs and rodents, although other mammals, birds, fish and amphibians can also be infected. In general, it occurs frequently in people related to hunting, meat handling and jobs associated with agriculture and livestock. Therefore, the risk groups for this disease are those formed by people who have close contact with the natural environment or its products, such as farmers, ranchers, veterinarians, hunters, fishermen, forestry employees, gardeners, cooks, and butchers.
Clinical symptoms in humans vary depending on the route of entry or the method of infection. There are 7 clinical presentations: ulceroglandular, glandular, oculoglandular, oropharyngeal, pneumonic, typhoid, and intestinal. Among them, the most common is ulceroglandular, which originates when contagion occurs through the bite of an arthropod or when contaminated animals or their remains are handled. An ulcer appears at the site of contact and inflammation of the regional lymph nodes occurs, along with high fever. With proper treatment (antimicrobial therapy), most patients make a full recovery.
Philippines: African Swine Fever
African swine fever (ASF) has already spread to 49 towns and cities in Eastern Visayas, affecting new areas, but the Department of Agriculture said that the outbreak is manageable.
The animal disease has already infected 14,924 hogs in 230 villages as of mid-September.
The number represents 6.68% of the region's 223,504 hog population, regional information officer Francis Rosaroso said.
In Leyte province, affected areas are Abuyog, Javier, Mahaplag, Dulag, MacArthur, Tanauan, Burauen, Palo, La Paz, San Miguel, Barugo, Tunga, Sta. Fe, Leyte, Pastrana, Tacloban City, Mayorga, Jaro, Kananga, Carigara, Tolosa, Dagami, Tabontabon, Ormoc City, Tabango, Matag-ob, Calubian, Villaba, and Baybay City.
In other provinces, ASF-hit areas are Silago, Sogod, and Libagon in Southern Leyte; Calbayog City, Catbalogan City, Sta. Rita, Hinabangan, Basey, Sta. Margarita, Gandara, Matuguinao, and Motiong in Samar; Lope de Vega, Catarman, Mondragon in Northern Samar; Dolores, Oras, Jipapad, Balangiga, and Guiuan in Eastern Samar.
"Although there are new areas affected, this is not alarming since the rate of increase has been going down. The total number of affected villages is only 5% of the total," Rosaroso said.
Leptospirosis -- a bacterial disease that spreads through the urine of infected animals such as rats and cattle -- has emerged as the biggest killer among monsoon diseases. Data gathered from the civic body [Mumbai] shows that 70 people have succumbed due to leptospirosis over the past 6 years. In comparison, dengue, a mosquito-borne disease, has killed 55 people and malaria has killed 38 people during the same period.
The leptospirosis infection is caused by the Leptospira bacteria that can enter the human body through cuts, abrasions or open wounds. The cases of leptospirosis are typically during monsoon and after flooding events, when people are forced to wade through water. However, doctors say that a few sporadic cases are reported throughout the year from areas with overflowing sewers, water accumulation, and a general lack of cleanliness.
Since 2015, the city has recorded 1,576 cases of leptospirosis, according to civic data. However, this data captures patients who were admitted only in the civic-run hospitals. A large number of patients could be treated in private hospitals and on an outpatient department basis as well.
"Mortality in leptospirosis is generally seen when patients seek medical advice very late," said Dr Wiqar Shaikh, professor of medicine at the state-run JJ Hospital [Mumbai]. "One of the severe impacts of leptospirosis is swelling in the liver, which may worsen in cases of late diagnosis. Also, patients with existing comorbidities can have a severe impact," he said adding that since June this year, he has treated around 40 patients with leptospirosis.
Germany: Q Fever
In Berlin, the animal disease Q fever was transmitted from sheep to laboratory staff in the summer. Up to 15 cases of infection are known to be counted in this outbreak, said Silvia Kostner, spokeswoman for the State Office for Health and Social Affairs and confirmed media reports. Q fever can be associated with flu-like symptoms in humans, but it can also lead to complication
Larger outbreaks like this are rare in Berlin, said Kostner. In this case, the infection process was quickly recognized and also ended. "At no time was there a risk to the general population," added the spokeswoman. The latest human illness known to the office was at the end of July.
According to the definition of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), Q fever is a zoonosis that is widespread almost worldwide - i.e., a disease that can be transmitted from animals to humans. It is caused by a bacterium called Coxiella burnetii. Ticks play a role in spreading among animals. The symptoms in animals are often ambiguous, and the disease is not fatal for them.
According to the RKI, about half of the cases lead to a flu-like illness if it is transmitted to humans -- for example via the air or animal excretions. It can be complicated by inflammation of the lungs, liver, heart muscle, or brain. Chronic disease courses, mainly heart valve inflammation, are very rare, but feared because of the severity of the disease.
A case of cutaneous form of anthrax in a shepherd was found in Shumen district. This is the first and only [human] case of the year in the country. According to a report on the epidemic situation of the Ministry of Health from mid-September, the man fell ill after treatment of the skin of a dead animal. After examination by an infectious disease specialist, he was left for home treatment. The diagnosis was laboratory confirmed. The case was notified to the Regional Directorate for Food Safety (RHI) in Shumen for taking measures of competence.
RHI-Shumen continues the epidemiological study (of the event) with the application of anti-epidemic measures.
This is the first case of anthrax in the country this year, according to the National Center for Infectious and Parasitic Diseases. At the same time last year, there was not a single patient with this disease.
Anthrax mainly affects herbivores. In humans, the skin form is the most common (affected organ). It is spread through contact with infected animals, contaminated soil, meat, and objects that have come into contact with the carcass. The incubation period is 1-20 days. The skin form begins with the appearance of a dense red spot, which increases for 1-2 days. Along with the local changes, there are also signs of intoxication of the body such as malaise, loss of appetite, headache, fever. If left untreated, the disease can have fatal consequences.
India: Foot and Mouth Disease
An outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) among cattle in Hassan has left both farmers and veterinarians worried.
Cases have been reported from Arkalgud, Arsikere, Channarayapatna, and Sakleshpur taluks. While the farming community, depending on cattle for regular income, is worried about their livelihood, the veterinarians are struggling hard to provide treatment amidst a shortage of staff members.
The Department of Veterinary and Animal Husbandry has reported over 150 cases in the district so far. As of Sept. 24, the animals in 16 villages of the district are being treated. So far, the death of one animal had been reported. However, farmers claim more animals have died over the last one month. The disease of cattle has an impact on milk production, affecting milk producers.
The vaccination for cattle is done once in 6 months under the National Animal Disease Control Program. However, the vaccination drive was not done in the last one year, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
United States: Swine Flu
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a new human infection with an influenza A(H1N2) variant (A(H1N2)v) virus was reported by Ohio. This is the second H1N2v case reported this year in the state.
The patient is less than 18 years of age, was not hospitalized, and has completely recovered from their illness.
The patient and the household contacts of the patient report no swine contact or attendance at agricultural exhibits where swine were present.
It is possible that limited human-to-human transmission occurred. No ongoing human-to-human transmission has been identified.
Ten human infections with a novel influenza A virus have been reported in the United States this influenza season, including 2 H3N2v (IA, WI), 3 H1N2v (IA, OH (2)), and 5 H1N1v (IA, NC, WI (3)) virus infections.
Six infections have occurred in children less than 18 years of age, and 4 have occurred in adults greater than or equal to 18 years of age. Of the 10 infected individuals, only one had no identified connection to swine. The other 9 individuals had direct contact with swine, were on a property with swine present, or had a household member who had direct contact with swine prior to illness onset.
China; Bird Flu
The health authority in southern China's Guangdong province said on Sept. 22 that a single case of a human being infected with the H5N6 strain of bird flu has been reported in the city of Dongguan.
The infected patient, a 53-year-old male, is being treated in hospital, the Health Commission of Guangdong Province said in a statement, adding that experts considered the risk of transmission to be low at this stage.
Mexico: Typhoid Fever
Tamaulipas state, on the west coast of Mexico and bordering Texas has reported 3,407 typhoid fever infections since the beginning of 2021, according to a Expreso.press report. This puts Tamaulipas at the top of cases reported in any one state, closely followed by Sinaloa state (3,381).
Typhoid fever, caused by the bacterium Salmonella enterica serotype Typhi, is a life-threatening bacterial infection. Typhoid fever is still common in the developing world, where it affects about 21 million people annually. S. Typhi lives only in humans. Persons with typhoid fever can have the organism in their bloodstream as well as intestinal tract. In addition, a small number of persons, called carriers, recover from typhoid fever but continue to carry the bacterium. Both ill persons and carriers shed S. Typhi in their feces.
You can get typhoid fever if you eat food or drink beverages that have been handled by a person who is shedding S. Typhi or if sewage contaminated with the bacterium gets into the water you use for drinking or washing food. Therefore, typhoid fever is more common in areas of the world where handwashing is less frequent and water is likely to be contaminated with sewage.
Anthrax is an infectious bacterial disease endemic in some parts of Africa. It affects people, livestock, as well as wildlife. Using GPS telemetry data, a team of scientists from the Cheetah Research Project of the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (Leibniz-IZW) reconstructed a special case of anthrax infection in Namibia: 3 free-ranging cheetahs in the Namib Desert died within 24 hours after feeding on a mountain zebra that tested positive for the disease. The zebra is the first described case of a wild animal infected with anthrax in this arid region. The case also shows that there might be previously unknown risks to cheetah populations in the desert.
Since 2015, scientists of the Leibniz-IZW Cheetah Research Project (CRP) have conducted a National Cheetah Survey together with the Namibian Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism (MEFT). The purpose is to obtain data on cheetah density and distribution across the country. Within this framework, a coalition of 3 cheetah males was captured in the Namib Desert and one animal equipped with a GPS collar. The recorded location and movement data were regularly downloaded during aerial tracking flights. On one of these flights, the carcass of a collared cheetah -- one of the members of the coalition -- was located from the aircraft. During the following ground inspection, the other 2 cheetahs were also found dead.
United States: Eastern Equine Encephalitis
The Camden County (NJ) Department of Health and Human Services reported an eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) case in a resident of Pine Hill.
On Sept. 21, laboratory test results positive for EEE were reported to the Camden County Department of Health and Human Services. The patient remains hospitalized.
"Eastern equine encephalitis is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. Only a few human cases are reported each year, and the disease can't be passed directly from person to person," said Commissioner Carmen Rodriguez, liaison to the Health Department. "The Camden County Department of Health is continuing to work with the Mosquito Commission to ensure that additional spraying and testing will be conducted in the area."
Symptoms of EEE include, but are not limited to, a sudden onset of high fever, stiff neck, lack of energy, general muscle pain, and a headache increasing in severity.
In the Suzak district of the Jalal-Abad region, 8 people were hospitalized with suspected anthrax. According to the head of the Jalal-Abad Interdistrict Center for Sanitary and Epidemiological Surveillance and Prevention of Infectious Diseases, Roma Uraimov, residents began to seek medical help from Sept. 23.
"In one of the settlements of the Suzak region, a sick cow was slaughtered. Meat was handed out to residents -- more than 100 people ate it; work is underway on this issue. Residents of the settlements Zhashasyn, Kyzyl-Senir and Boston applied to the medical institution," he said.\
Earlier in the Aksy region of Jalal-Abad there was also an outbreak of anthrax; 7 people were hospitalized, and 2 of them had the disease confirmed.
September 24, 2021
A case of BSE, commonly known as mad cow disease, has been found on a farm in Somerset.
The animal infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy has died and has been removed from the site, the Animal and Plant Health Agency [APHA] said.
It is unclear how the cow caught the disease and until an investigation has completed restrictions on livestock movements in the area around the farm have been imposed as a precaution.
The agency said there was no risk of mad cow disease entering the food supply system as a result of the incident.
The chief veterinary officer, Christine Middlemiss, said detecting the BSE case was proof the government's surveillance program for containing the disease was working.
"A single case of classical BSE has been confirmed on a farm in Somerset. The animal died on farm and was tested as part of our TSE [transmissible spongiform encephalopathy] surveillance controls.
"Movement restrictions have been put in place on the farm. This is standard procedure until we have a clear understanding of the origin of the disease.
United States: St. Louis Encephalitis Virus
The Fresno County, Calif., health department on Sept. 17 announced the first case of Saint Louis Encephalitis in the county this year. It's also the first in the state.
The mosquito-borne illness is similar to West Nile because it affects the central nervous system.
It can feel like the flu because symptoms include aches, pains and fever.
Health officials say they are most concerned about the elderly and young kids because it can cause more serious complications.
The community is urged to avoid mosquito bites as much as possible by eliminating standing water -- and avoid being outdoors at dusk.
The person who was sick with the virus was treated at a Valley hospital and is expected to be okay.
China: Avian Influenza
Officials with the Hong Kong Centre for Health Protection (CHP) report monitoring an additional human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) in mainland China.
The case involves a 40-year-old woman living in Yongzhou in Hunan Province, who had prior exposure to a live poultry market before the onset of symptoms. She developed symptoms on Sept. 8 and was admitted for treatment Sept. 9. The patient is in serious condition.
Since 2014, 43 human cases of avian influenza A(H5N6) have been reported in mainland China, with 4 out of 10 cases reported in just the past year
Avian influenza is caused by those influenza viruses that mainly affect birds and poultry, such as chickens or ducks. Clinical presentation of avian influenza in humans may range from flu-like symptoms (e.g. fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches) to severe respiratory illness (e.g. chest infection). Eye infection (conjunctivitis) and gastrointestinal symptoms (e.g. nausea, vomiting and diarrhea) have also been reported. The incubation period ranges from 7 to 10 days. The more virulent forms can result in respiratory failure, multi-organ failure and even death.
Cambodia: Avian Influenza
In February 2021, routine sentinel surveillance for influenza-like illness in Cambodia detected a human avian influenza A(H9N2) virus infection. Investigations identified no recent H9N2 virus infections in 43 close contacts. One chicken sample from the infected child's house was positive for H9N2 virus and genetically similar to the human virus.
The reported case is a 3-year-old boy with a history of exposure to domestic poultry who presented with influenza-like illness in February 2021 and was confirmed to be infected with influenza A/H9N2 virus.
H9N2 viruses circulate endemically in poultry from Cambodia, as they do in Bangladesh, Viet Nam, and China. Of avian influenza viruses (AIVs) detected in chickens in Cambodia in live bird markets (LBMs), 75% are H9N2. Whereas serosurveys indicate persons in Cambodia with poultry contact are exposed to H9N2, active human infections have not been detected.
Guinea: Marburg Virus
On Sept. 16, the Ministry of Health of Guinea declared the end of the Marburg virus disease outbreak in Guéckédou prefecture, Nzérékoré Region. In accordance with WHO recommendations, the declaration was made 42 days after the safe and dignified burial of the only confirmed patient reported in this outbreak. This was the first-ever Marburg virus disease case reported in Guinea.
From Aug. 3 to the end of outbreak declaration, only one confirmed case was reported. The patient, a man, had onset of symptoms on July 25. He went to a small health facility near his village, with symptoms of fever, headache, fatigue, abdominal pain, and gingival hemorrhage. A rapid diagnostic test for malaria returned a negative result, and the patient received ambulatory supportive care with rehydration and symptomatic treatment.
Upon returning home, his condition worsened, and he died on Aug. 2. An alert was subsequently raised by the sub-prefecture public health care facility to the prefectorial department of health in Guéckédou. The investigation team was immediately deployed to the village to conduct an in-depth investigation and collected a post-mortem oral swab sample, which was shipped on the same day to the viral hemorrhagic fever laboratory in Guéckédou city. On Aug. 3, the sample tested positive for Marburg virus disease by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and negative for Ebola virus disease.
September 10, 2021
Ukraine: African Swine Fever
A case of African swine fever has been registered in Kharkiv region: quarantine restrictions are introduced.
Measures that will be implemented in the region to localize the outbreak were discussed at a meeting in the Kharkiv Regional State Administration with the participation of law enforcement officials.
An outbreak of the disease was recorded at the Sloboda National Nature Park in the Bohodukhiv district, where 9 dead wild boar were found.
According to Dmytro Voloshko, Chief State Veterinary Inspector, the selected animal samples were sent to the Regional State Laboratory of the State Food and Consumer Service in Poltava Oblast.
"On Sept. 2, we received an examination to confirm the diagnosis of African swine fever. Therefore, an order was issued to establish temporary quarantine restrictions on ASF," Dmytro Voloshko said.
During the meeting, Oleksandr Skakun, head of the Kharkiv regional administration, said that all measures should be taken in accordance with the instructions on the fight against ASF.
After an animal died in Gunkiri town of Guroymak district and anthrax disease was detected in Degirmen village, the town and village were quarantined.
Veterinary teams operating in the district started vaccination studies at 6 points. Upon the death of a citizen's animal in Gunkiri town and the detection of diseased animals in Degirmen village, the sample taken by the teams of the District Provincial Directorate of Agriculture and Forestry was sent to the Elazig Veterinary Research Control Center Laboratory and the test was positive, and Gunkiri town and Degirmen village were quarantined.
In order to prevent the spread of the anthrax disease, it was decided to keep the village and town in quarantine for 15 days.
Anthrax is enzootic in eastern Turkey and a constant problem, and the previous multiple outbreaks in 2018 were serious, with very significant numbers of livestock deaths. So far this outbreak in 2021 appears to involve livestock in Gunkin and Degirmen. How many has yet to be revealed. We hope their veterinary vaccination response is up to the challenge. That there were animal cases suggests that the cattle in these 2 sites had not been vaccinated this spring.
A 10-year-old child was infected by a hantavirus in Carahue, Araucania region and remains in serious condition in the Calvo Mackenna Hospital in Santiago. Recently, 3 people infected with this virus were reported in Araucania, one of whom died as a result of the disease.
The case of the child is being investigated where the infection might have occurred in a rural area of Carahue. The child sought medical attention at the Nueva Imperial Hospital in which the hantavirus protocols were activated and, finally, it was decided to transfer the child to the Hospital Calvo Mackenna in Santiago because of the patient's complex condition.
This past July, a 44-year-old woman died as a result of a hantavirus infection in the Curacautin community.
The Araucania Health Regional Health Ministerial Secretariat issued an announcement for people to avoid exposure to hantaviruses, a disease that is transmitted in the urine of the wild long-tailed mouse.
The Department of Sanitary and Epidemiological Control reported a tetanus death in northern Kazakhstan. The case was a 54-year-old man from Uzbekistan who injured his right foot with a nail during construction work. Despite exhibiting symptoms he did not seek medical help until 5 days after the injury.
With the persistence of symptoms, an ambulance was called for the man. The patient was taken to the emergency room of the district hospital. At the time of the examination, he presented with spasm of the jaw, stiffness along the entire spine, and severe weakness.
"Based on the presence of an epidemiological history and clinical picture, a diagnosis of tetanus was made. The vaccination status of the patient is unknown. Emergency vaccination was carried out. From the moment of admission to the hospital, the patient's condition remained without visible changes, consistently grave. On August 28, he died," stated Arman Kushbasov, deputy head of the regional department of sanitary and epidemiological control.
A 14-year-old teenager died of anthrax last month. This is recent news from Shandong Province's Disease Control and Prevention Bureau. The reporter's statistics showed that the country has reported at least 162 anthrax cases and 2 deaths this year.
Anthrax is a zoonotic infectious disease caused by a bacterium called Bacillus anthracis. Skin anthrax is the most common, while pulmonary anthrax can quickly cause coma and death, with a mortality rate of more than 90%. People who are infected with anthrax are mostly those engaged in breeding and slaughtering cattle, sheep, and livestock, and selling related products. People engaged in fur processing can also be infected with anthrax. Researchers say that the chaotic private livestock trade brings the risk of anthrax outbreaks.
This year, anthrax or suspected anthrax epidemics have been detected in many provinces and cities in China, and deaths have occurred. According to reports published by China CDC, Shandong Province CDC, Binzhou CDC, and other units, there have been 2 confirmed patients of anthrax in Binzhou City, Shandong Province in August 2021 as reported by Shandong CDC. There were 2 anthrax cases, a 14-year-old student and a 35-year-old male. The student visited a medical institution several times and died a few days later.
The World Health Organization (WHO) reported an additional 629 monkeypox cases in the past 6 weeks in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
Also reported are 6 additional monkeypox fatalities.
Through Aug. 8, 2,523 cases have been reported in 2021 with 66 deaths.
In 2020, a total of 6,257 suspected cases including 229 deaths (CFR 3.7%) were reported in 133 health zones from 17 out of 26 provinces in the country.
Monkeypox, a rare zoonosis that occurs sporadically in forested areas of Central and West Africa, is an orthopoxvirus that can cause fatal illness.
Brazil: Haff Disease
The northern Brazilian state of Amazonas recorded a further 11 cases of rhabdomyolysis, known locally as black urine disease; not to be confused with alkaptonuria, which is given the same nickname. So far, 44 cases were confirmed over a 10-day period in 5 Amazonas cities, with the municipality of Itacoatiara seeing 34 cases and the 1st death caused by the disease.
Rhabdomyolysis is a potentially life-threatening syndrome characterized by the destruction of muscle fibers. It usually occurs in healthy people, following trauma, excessive physical activity, seizures, consumption of alcohol and other drugs, infections, and the ingestion of contaminated food.
When the syndrome appears after the consumption of fish and shellfish, it is associated with Haff disease, which is still poorly understood. In the cases registered in Amazonas state, the affected patients had reportedly consumed popular local fish such as pirarucu, tambaqui, and pirapitinga.
A total of 7 people, including a child, died from this pneumonic plague between Aug. 25-30, according to a Russian media report citing the local Ministry of Health. Three patients died in a medical facility, the rest of the disease was diagnosed during a postmortem examination. Currently, 22 patients are being treated.
Cases of pneumonic plague are concentrated near the capital, in the center of the island. According to the source, the last time pneumonic plague was recorded in 2017.
The disease is fatal, but curable if treated in time.
If the infection reaches the lungs, this poses a great threat to others, since there is an active release of the pathogen into the external environment of microbes for the spread of others.
Plague is an endemic disease in Madagascar that appears every year. According to the Pasteur Institute, the country accounts for 75% of all cases of diseases worldwide.
India: Nipah Virus
A day after a 12-year-old boy in Kozhikode succumbed to the Nipah virus, Kerala health minister Veena George confirmed that 11 more people, including the child's mother, are showing symptoms of the viral infection.
Samples have been taken from all 11 persons suspected of contracting Nipah virus.
An animal husbandry team has inspected the house and premises where the 12-year-old lived with his family. Samples have been collected from 2 goats owned by the family. Samples have also been taken from 2 rambutan trees in their plot, as bats may have bitten the fruits on the tree. The team also found a habitat of bats across the lake from the house.
The state health department is closely monitoring the cases and meticulously conducting contact tracing, said the health minister. As many as 251 contacts have been identified, of which 54 people are in the high-risk category.
The health department will begin conducting house-to-house surveillance to see whether anyone has symptoms or has been left out from contacts.
China: Avian Influenza
Chinese health officials reported one new case of human infection with avian influenza A(H9N2) to the World Health Organization (WHO) this week. The case is a 20-month-old female from Changsha, Hunan Province, China.
The child had a history of exposure to domestic poultry prior to illness onset, and no further cases were suspected among family members or any other close contacts at the time of reporting.
This is the 15th case of avian influenza A(H9N2) reported from China in 2021. A total of 56 cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H9N2) have been officially reported from China to WHO since December 2015.
United States; Eastern Equine Encephalitis
The Burnett County, Wis., Health Department reports that a horse in Burnett County has tested positive for eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), which is caused by the EEE virus. This is the first confirmed case of EEE in a horse in Burnett County this year, and the second case in horses in the state this year. No EEE cases in humans have been reported in Wisconsin thus far in 2021; however, there were 2 human cases in 2020.
EEE virus is spread to humans, horses, and other animals through the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes acquire EEE virus by feeding on infected birds. The virus is not spread person to person or directly between animals or between animals and humans. Documentation of an EEE positive horse, however, confirms that there are mosquitoes in the area infected with the EEE virus that can spread the virus to people and other animals.
Many people infected with EEE virus do not get sick. Those who do become ill may develop fever, headache, chills, and vomiting. The illness may become severe, resulting in encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), disorientation, seizures, coma, or death. There is no specific vaccine or treatment for EEE illness available for people.
Following the registration of several outbreaks of bluetongue disease in sheep and cattle in the states of Al-Bayd, Saida, Laghouat, and Msila, the regional veterinary services in Setif have warned livestock breeders of the danger of the disease spreading among their livestock, with the need to take precautions against the outbreak.
According to the sources of Sawt Setif, the RVS stated that bluetongue disease is transmitted from one animal to another by mosquitoes, causing severe health risks and huge economic losses.
They called on farmers to monitor their livestock, including sheep and cows, and to inform the veterinarian in the event of clinical signs such as high temperature, nasal discharge, catarrh, swelling of the nose and tongue, lesions on the hooves and udders. In order to prevent infection, the RVS called to avoid introduction of animals from infested areas, clean and disinfect livestock stables, while tightening periodic monitoring of livestock herds.
Hong Kong: African Swine Fever
The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) announced that samples taken from a wild pig carcass had tested positive for African swine fever (ASF) virus under the surveillance program for ASF. It is the first case of ASF detected in the wild pig population in Hong Kong.
In light of the recent abnormal wild pig deaths in the Siu Sai Wan area on Hong Kong Island, the AFCD arranged the wild pig carcass which was found at Cape Collinson Path to undergo laboratory tests. Samples taken from the carcass have tested positive for ASF virus. No other abnormal deaths have been observed in other areas in Hong Kong so far. The AFCD will continue to monitor for any abnormal deaths, and maintain surveillance in the wild pig population.
Currently, no pig farms are affected in relation to this case. There are no pig farms on Hong Kong Island. The AFCD has notified all local pig farmers about the case immediately and they have been advised to enhance farm bio-security to prevent intrusion of wild pigs and introduction of ASF virus into the farm. Local pig farmers are also reminded to notify the AFCD if their pigs show any abnormal health conditions. The AFCD has been closely monitoring the animal health conditions in all local pig farms and samples will be collected for ASF testing as necessary.
September 3, 2021
A 7-year-old boy died of rabies on Aug. 21 after he was bitten by a stray dog in Agaram Mel village, near Poonamallee, in Tiruvallur district.
The victim was playing on a street when a stray dog bit him and four friends.
A villager said while 4 of the boys were administered anti-rabies vaccines, the victim’s parents took him to a man who practiced herbal medicine.
The boy started behaving abnormally a few days ago and was taken to the Institute of Child Health and Hospital for Children, Egmore. The victim's health began deteriorating and he died without responding to treatment.
South Africa: Trypanosomiasis
A 43-year-old South African professional hunter was active in the Eastern Province of Zambia during July and August 2021, where he experienced a number of tsetse fly bites.
He developed an acute febrile illness, which did not respond to self-medication with an antimalarial. He was admitted to a hospital in Lusaka, Zambia, and a diagnosis of trypanosomiasis was suspected. The test for SARS-CoV-2 was negative.
He was transferred for further management to a hospital in Pretoria, South Africa. On admission, jaundice, scattered petechiae, and a typical trypanosomal chancre on one ankle, were noted. Marked thrombocytopenia, moderate leucopenia, and mildly deranged liver functions were found. A very scanty trypomastigote parasitaemia was noted on a Giemsa-stained blood smear, which was confirmed by rtPCR.
The patient has responded well to suramin (course presently being completed), and examination of the CSF was negative for parasites on microscopy and PCR, with normal biochemistry and no leukocytes. In contrast to the 2017-2019 period, when several patients with East African trypanosomiasis were medivaced to South Africa for treatment, COVID-19-related travel and tourism restrictions and economic constraints have probably reduced human exposure to the disease in endemic areas of Central and East Africa during 2020-2021.
United States: Chronic Wasting Disease
Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been discovered in a deer breeding facility in Duval County, Tex., marking the first positive detection of the disease in the county.
The tissue samples were submitted by the deer breeding facility as part of required CWD surveillance programs. The samples indicated the presence of CWD during testing at the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory (TVMDL) in College Station. The National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa confirmed CWD in those tissue samples.
Officials have taken immediate action to secure all deer at the facility and plan to conduct additional investigations for CWD. In addition, other breeding facilities having received deer from this facility or shipped deer to this facility during the last 5 years are under movement restrictions and cannot move or release deer at this time.
The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection announced that white-tailed deer at captive cervid facilities in Sauk and Taylor counties tested positive for chronic wasting disease.
It's the first finding of the fatal deer disease in Taylor County. By state law, deer baiting and feeding in the county will be prohibited beginning Sept. 1, according to the Department of Natural Resources.
The CWD-positive animals were a 6-year-old doe in Taylor County and a 9-year-old buck in Sauk County. The names and locations of the deer farms were not released by DATCP, per agency policy.
Nepal: Scrub Typhus
More than 20 cases of scrub typhus have been reported in the Baitadi district since mid-July, health officials say. Doctors at the District Hospital in Baitadi have warned local residents to stay alert and aware of the increase in scrub typhus cases.
Cases of scrub typhus, a mite-borne bacterial infectious disease, have been increasing in the district this season, doctors say. Last year, the hospital had received only 2 to 3 scrub typhus cases during the monsoon season. This year, since mid-July, 22 scrub typhus cases have been reported in Baitadi, according to the data of the District Hospital in Baitadi. In the past one week, the District Hospital has been receiving around 4 scrub typhus cases on a daily basis.
Scrub typhus, also sometimes called bush typhus, is an infectious disease that is caused by the parasite Orientia tsutsugamushi, a mite-borne bacterium, and spreads in the human body after they are bitten by infected chiggers (larval mites) found in mice.
"Our hospital is receiving scrub typhus patients every day. We have requested health posts in the district to stay on high alert and immediately refer patients showing symptoms of scrub typhus to the hospital," said Harish Pant, information officer of the hospital.
Brazil: Haff Disease
Authorities are on alert after the increase in the number of people suspected of having Haff syndrome in the states of Amazonas and Bahia.
Haff Syndrome, known as "black urine" disease, is caused by a toxin found in certain fish and shellfish. The substance causes damage to the muscular system and organs such as kidneys.
At least 25 cases are under analysis, 19 of them in the city of Itacoatiara (Amazonas) and another 6 in 5 municipalities in Bahia: Alagoinhas, Simoes Filho, Marau, Mata de Sao Jorge, and Salvador.
According to the health surveillance, in Amazonas the suspicion is those infected have consumed freshwater fish. Of the 19 cases in Itacoatiara, 8 are hospitalized.
United States: Legionellosis
Maine health officials confirmed 4 recent cases of legionellosis in the Bangor area. All 4 individuals were hospitalized. The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Maine CDC) is investigating the cases to determine if there is a common exposure among them.
Legionella bacteria are found naturally in freshwater environments, such as lakes and streams. Legionella can become a health concern when it grows and spreads in human-made building water systems such as cooling towers used in air conditioning systems, hot tubs, fountains, and large plumbing systems. Legionnaires' disease, which is a type of pneumonia, may result when individuals breathe in droplets of water that contain the bacteria. Symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, fever, muscle aches, and headaches.
Most healthy people exposed to Legionella do not get sick. Those at increased risk of getting sick are people aged 50 years and older; current or former smokers; people with a chronic lung disease, weak immune systems, or cancer; and people with underlying illnesses such as diabetes, kidney failure, or liver failure.
The Veterinary Epidemiological Observatory update of Aug. 27, reports 177 active bluetongue [BT] outbreaks in Sardinia, with 48 542 animals involved, 202 already dead, and another 21 suspected outbreaks.
Following the reappearance of the infectious disease affecting ruminants and given its rapid spread in the areas still affected, the CIA (Italian Farmers Confederation) requests the urgent convocation of a meeting between the regional departments of Health and Agriculture and professional trade organizations to obtain a precise picture of the situation and of the actions undertaken to block the spread of the epidemic.
"We would not wish to go back to the years 2012 and 2013," warns the regional president of the CIA, Ignazio Cirronis, "when over 100,000 dead animals and a sharp reduction in milk production were reported."
A total of 2,035 deaths due to cholera was recorded in the country as of Aug. 27, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has disclosed. According to the latest cholera epidemic report by the NCDC, the total number of suspected cases of cholera infection in the 23 states of the federation was 58,698.
The NCDC report stated that 12 states reported 3,098 suspected cases.
The Official Veterinary Services of Andalusia, for the first time in 4 years, have detected the circulation of serotype 4 of the virus of the disease known as bluetongue in 2 livestock farms in the province of Huelva: the 1firt in a sentinel goat in El Granado, within the National Bluetongue Surveillance Program implemented in Spain, and the second in a sheep farm in the municipality of Rosal de la Frontera, where the sheep that were positive had previously presented symptoms compatible with the disease.
In both cases, the farms are located a few kilometers from the border with Portugal, whose authorities have reported the suspicion of 3 outbreaks in the municipality of Serpa, which they will foreseeably confirm in the coming days.
The animals in both cases have tested positive for serotype 4 of the bluetongue virus by PCR, the results having been confirmed by the Central Veterinary Laboratory of Algete, the national reference laboratory for the disease in Spain.
The municipality of Rosal de la Frontera is located within the region of Cortegana, which was currently a disease-free zone, although the veterinary authorities have extended the restriction zone to the region of Cortegana and the following municipalities in the region of Jerez of the Knights in the province of Badajoz: Valencia de Mombuey, Oliva de la Frontera, and Villanueva del Fresno.
One of the 2 patients infected with anthrax in East China's Shandong Province has died, according to a weekly report issued by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The victim, a 14-year-old student, died on Aug. 6. The other patient is a 35-year-old man who is a butcher, according to the report.
The 2 confirmed cases were reported to the Shandong CDC, and the authority formed a joint investigation team to determine the sources of the infection to prevent any further spread. Anthrax is a rare but serious infection caused by the bacteria Bacillus anthracis, and it is often fatal.
On July 28, the student suddenly experienced fever, fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea and convulsions, and was taken to the health clinic of Liumiao village for treatment. The patient was transferred to Binzhou Medical University Hospital due to sudden unconsciousness, lockjaw and nuchal rigidity during infusion in the village clinic. On Aug. 6, the patient was voluntarily discharged from the hospital and died on the same day.
Botswana: Avian Influenza
Animal health authorities in Botswana have announced a suspected case of highly pathogenic bird flu at a backyard poultry farm in Bokaa village.
The potential case of bird flu was identified in the Kgatleng district of Botswana. The country's ministry of agriculture has banned the movement of live birds, eggs, meat, and feathers within and out of the Bokaa area to contain the outbreak.
Poultry producers are also being told to improve biosecurity protocols in their facilities and prevent contact between poultry and wild birds.
In the North Kazakhstan region, the Akzhar [Akzharskiy] district, where anthrax was found in cows, the region was divided into 4 zones, Kazinform correspondent reports. The document says that for the effective implementation of special veterinary measures to eliminate and prevent the further spread of anthrax, the territory of the region was divided into 4 zones.