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Center of Excellence for Emerging and Zoonotic Animal Diseases

2021 World News

World News of 2021 is archived here. To see the latest world news, please go to the World News main page.

December 23, 2021

Zimbabwe: Anthrax

Since Jan. 1, health officials in Zimbabwe reported 212 human anthrax cases. No deaths have been reported. The latest cases were reported in early November.

The anthrax outbreak started in September 2019 affecting mainly Buhera and Gokwe North and South districts. Since the start of the outbreak, 979 cases, including 3 deaths have been reported.

There are no reports of person-to-person transmission of anthrax. People get anthrax by handling contaminated animal or animal products, consuming undercooked meat of infected animals and more recently, intentional release of spores.

Anthrax is a bacterial pathogen in livestock and wild animals. Ruminants such as bison, cattle, sheep and goats are highly susceptible, and horses can also be infected. Anthrax is a very serious disease of livestock because it can potentially cause the rapid loss of a large number of animals in a very short time. Affected animals are often found dead with no illness detected.

India: Food-borne illness

The death toll in a suspected case of food poisoning in Dahod district's Bhulwan village went up to 8 on Dec. 15, with one more person succumbing during treatment. Seven of the 17 affected persons died after allegedly consuming a meal from the concluding ceremony of a 9-day religious event in Bhulwan village on Dec. 12.

According to police, the villagers participated in sacrificing goats at the concluding ceremony of "Jatar" gathering, which is a 9-day religious event held every 5 years to pray for the well-being of the village. Police said that the local residents, as per tradition, sacrificed 6 goats, and the cooked meat was distributed among people of the village as "prasad." A total of 17 persons, all male, were admitted to the hospital, police added.

Dahod Superintendent of Police Hitesh Joysar told The Indian Express that the first autopsy report of the 4 deceased persons on Tuesday had indicated death due to poisoning, but the police will collect forensic evidence.

Brazil: St. Louis Encephalitis

The Department of Epidemiology of the Municipal Health Foundation (FMS) of Teresina (FMS) received laboratory confirmation of a case of human infection with the Saint Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV) Dec. 7. An adult patient developed neurological symptoms in March. Although she lived and became ill in Lagoa do Mato - Maranhao (probable place of infection), the patient sought medical care and was admitted to the Emergency Hospital of Teresina (HUT), where she received treatment. There was a good clinical evolution and the ELISA-IgM exams and neutralization test by plaque reduction performed at the Evandro Chagas Institute were positive for SLEV - thus fulfilling criteria for case confirmation.

At the time of hospitalization, the case was reported and the investigation began through the Surveillance Program for Neuroinvasive Diseases caused by Arbovirus - started in Teresina in 2013. This surveillance strategy is implemented in all public hospitals (municipal, state and federal) and private institutions in Teresina, with the support of teams from the Hospital Epidemiology Centers.

United States: Leptospirosis

Amid the push to get COVID-19 vaccine boosters, Hollywood dog owners are rushing to protect not only themselves from the threat of pandemic but their furry friends as well. However, the pup vaccine they're looking to get isn't made by Pfizer or Moderna -- it's a vaccination to protect against a recent outbreak of leptospirosis among dogs in the Los Angeles (LA) and New York City areas.

While veterinary hospitals in urban areas usually see around 15 to 20 cases of this transmitted disease a year, a recent uptick has shown more than 100 cases in LA and New York just over the course of the past few months. An infection can cause lack of appetite, fever, vomiting, lethargy, diarrhea, dehydration and, in more severe cases, kidney and liver failure, requiring 24-hour hospitalization for several days.

The particular strain behind this outbreak passes from dogs to other dogs. "So it's likely being transmitted at dog parks, daycare facilities, boarding kennels and other highly social areas for dogs," says VCA regional medical director Dr. Silene St. Bernard. Many indoor dog play places around LA, as well as veterinarians, have been sending out alerts to their clients to make sure they vaccinate their 4-legged friends.

Canada: Mad Cow Disease

Alberta Agriculture Minister Nate Horner says an older animal has tested positive for atypical mad cow disease in the province.

It's Alberta's 1st case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, also known as BSE, in almost 6 years.

Horner says atypical BSE presents no risk to human health and is not transmissible.

He says the case is not expected to affect the market and quick detection demonstrates that inspectors and producers are dedicated to keeping the disease out of Canada's cattle herd.

This type of BSE happens at a rate of about one in one million cattle and has been reported 6 times in the United States, the last time in 2018.

United States: Herpesvirus

Zookeepers at the Albuquerque BioPark are keeping a close eye on an elephant they say has elephant endotheliotropic herpesvirus. The BioPark says 3-year-old Thorne tested positive for a very low level of the virus.

They believe he should be okay since they caught it early. Elephants carry the virus latently throughout their entire lives, and researchers do not know why the virus ever actively appears. Thorne will continue to spend time with his herd and can be seen in outdoor habitats.

This virus causes fatal hemorrhagic disease commonly identified at North American zoos. The virus causes only benign external herpetic lesions in African elephants, but in Asian elephants infection results in endothelial disease, which in many cases can be fatal.

United States: West Nile Virus

Maricopa County continues to break records for the number of West Nile virus cases and deaths recorded this year. As of Dec. 17, 1,300 cases had been recorded in the county, along with 90 deaths.

That's compared to 3 cases and only one death in 2020, according to Maricopa County Department of Public Health records.

Since around a month ago, the county has seen an additional 247 recorded cases of West Nile virus and 78 additional deaths, according to health department data.

With a particularly wet summer this year that followed an extraordinarily dry summer in 2020, conditions were perfect this year for West Nile virus to spread in Maricopa County.

Warmer-than-usual temperatures that extended through November and into early December kept the mosquito season going in the Valley when colder weather might have stopped it.

West Nile virus was first detected in Arizona in 2003, according to the Arizona Department of Public Health. People contract the disease when an infected mosquito bites them. West Nile is not transmitted through [direct] human-to-human contact.

Israel: Avian Influenza

The Ministry of Agriculture announced an unusual outbreak of bird flu in the locality of Margalio in the Upper Galilee. Traffic restrictions on the entry of trucks and equipment into the poultry farms were imposed in the area, and anyone engaged with poultry elsewhere was instructed not to approach the coop complexes.

The Veterinary Services fear that they will have to prepare for the extermination of about half a million laying hens in order to prevent the spread of bird flu.

This incident is accompanied by poultry mortality and requires culling and complete isolation until the event's termination is officially announced.

China: Hantavirus

Since the beginning of winter, Xi'an, in northwest China's Shaanxi Province, has recorded a series of hemorrhagic fever cases, a natural epidemic disease with a high fatality rate. Medical experts said that rodents are the main source of infection and called on the public not to panic as vaccinations can effectively prevent and control the disease, while human-to-human transmission is basically impossible.

The Global Times learned from a medical staff member at the infection unit of the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University that the hospital admitted a patient with non-life-threatening hemorrhagic fever in the past few days.

Due to the recent COVID-19 outbreak in Xi'an, many hospitals with infection units have temporarily stopped receiving patients and are only attending to patients infected with COVID-19, said the staff member.

According to media reports, hemorrhagic fever is a common infectious disease in northern China. Starting from October every year, some areas of Shaanxi enter the high-incidence season of hemorrhagic fever.

In recent years, the virus institute of the Shaanxi Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed local infections in Xi'an by widespread field investigations and laboratory neutralization antibody detection and identification.

Experts said that hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS), also known as epidemic hemorrhagic fever, is caused by hantaviruses, with rodents as the main source of infection.

United Kingdom: Avian Influenza

Action is being taken yet again to contain any spread of the [avian influenza H5N1] virus as the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) confirmed a strain of avian influenza had been found in birds in the Helsby area. It's the second reported case in a month.

Now, Cheshire West and Chester Council, Defra, APHA and the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) are putting several measures in place to help prevent this from happening. This includes a 3 km Protection Zone and a 10 km Surveillance Zone, while owners have been reminded that all poultry and captive birds in the 3 km Protection Zone must be kept inside unless otherwise directed by a veterinary inspector.

The zones restrict access to locations where birds are kept and impose restrictions on the movement of birds but don't limit access to residents or business owners.

United States: Shigellosis

The County of San Diego has announced the ongoing outbreak of shigellosis now stands at 46 confirmed and 5 probable cases, with slowing cases from a week ago and a total of 3 since the 41 confirmed and 7 probable cases reported in the 3 Dec 2021 update.

The County Public Health shigella website includes an epidemiological curve showing declining case numbers in recent weeks. The cases are among individuals experiencing homelessness, with the majority at multiple locations in central San Diego and 2 cases in North County.

No source of the outbreak has currently been identified. The County continues to work closely with the City of San Diego, regional homeless service providers, and others to identify new cases, prevent future potential exposures and promote good hygienic and sanitation precautions.

Shigellosis is a contagious infection typically spread by contaminated surfaces, food or water, or person to person. Those at increased risk include young children (especially those in daycare), people who are experiencing homelessness, travelers to locations with poor sanitation, and men who have sex with men. In 2020, a total of 240 shigellosis cases were reported in San Diego County residents while the 426 cases reported in 2019 were the highest since 1995.

Zimbabwe: Shigellosis

Bulowayo's Tshabalala Extension suburb has reportedly been hit by a dysentery outbreak at a time when residents are being tormented by diarrhea. The diarrhea outbreak recently claimed the life of a resident of the suburb and infected hundred others. The outbreak has been blamed on contaminated water after the local authority implemented a 72-hour water-shedding regime.

A resident told Southern Eye that he had diarrhea for the second time in days and was told by nurses that he was suffering from dysentery. "I am still feeling dizzy and have a running stomach. I am passing stool with blood. I was told that I have dysentery. My son was also having the same problem. My neighbor was also complaining of the same problem," he said.

Tshabalala Residents Association chairperson Webster Tsondayi urged council to provide answers to the recurrent outbreaks of water-borne diseases. "We appeal for effective communication from the city council. We hear that it's water contamination," Tsondayi said. "They should do like they did last time when there were water shortages in the city where they explained to residents the challenges they were facing. We will understand if they explain to us rather than remaining mum."

Bulawayo City Council health services director Edwin Sibanda could neither deny nor confirm the outbreak. 


December 17, 2021

Italy: African Swine Fever

Three free-ranging pigs of the 170 slaughtered at the end of November in the Talana countryside as part of the actions to combat African swine fever (ASF) ordered by the project unit, were found to be seropositive -- small numbers, especially if compared to the latest killings that did not register cases of serological and virological positivity, but enough to decree the existence of an outbreak.

"The official status" -- declares Antonio Montisci, director of the regional service of public veterinary health and food safety -- "will arrive on the basis of the provisions of the European regulation of last April, much more restrictive than the previous one. The new provisions provide that in the presence of 2 seropositive animals, an outbreak is declared."

This news will not affect the report of the inspectors of Brussels who visited Sardinia in November for an audit on what has been done in recent years to eradicate the disease that has afflicted the Sardinian pig sector for 43 years.

Congo: Monkeypox

The government of Maniema, a province in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), officially declared Dec. 9 a monkeypox outbreak. With 191 monkeypox cases, including 24 deaths, reported since the end of September, Afani Idrissa Mangala, the acting governor of Maniema, declared in a statement the outbreak in the province.

The outbreak was confirmed after the confirmation of samples sent to the National Institute of Biomedical Research (INRB), said Mangala, calling on the population to be vigilant and to consult the nearest health centers in case of fever.

In November 2021, a measles outbreak broke out in the same province.

Monkeypox was first identified in 1958, amongst laboratory monkeys. The first human cases were discovered in 1970 in the DRC. Fever, itchy toes, headache, muscle pain, and swollen lymph nodes, among others, have been identified as the symptoms of the disease.

The disease is not deadly and can be cured [not cured, instead prevented] through the smallpox vaccine.

China: Avian Influenza

Hong Kong health authorities report monitoring a human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) in a 54-year-old woman living in Zigong, Sichuan Province. The woman had exposure to deceased backyard poultry before the onset of symptoms. She developed symptoms on Nov. 17, was admitted for treatment on Nov. 21, and died on Nov. 23.

This is the 27th human case reported on Mainland China in the past year and the 52nd case reported since the 1st case was reported in 2014. 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 includes eye infection (conjunctivitis), flulike symptoms (e.g., fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches), or severe respiratory illness (e.g., chest infection). The incubation period ranges from 7 to 10 days.

The more virulent forms can result in respiratory failure, multi-organ failure, and even death. People mainly become infected with avian influenza virus through contact with infected birds and poultry (live or dead) or their droppings or contact with contaminated environments (such as wet markets and live poultry markets). Human-to-human transmission is inefficient.

People in close contact with poultry are more susceptible to contracting avian influenza. The elderly, children and people with chronic illness have a higher risk of developing complications such as bronchitis and chest infection.

Dominican Republic: African Swine Fever

It can hardly be called a surprise that African Swine Fever (ASF) has spread to other areas of Haiti. The virus was also found in the north of the country, making it likely ASF has spread to all areas of Hispaniola island.

The latest discoveries show the virus continues to require extreme vigilance. The entire North American continent is praying the virus will stay contained on Hispaniola island, which Haiti shares with the Dominican Republic, and where ASF has been reported from since April.

The latest updates at the website of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) show the virus has been confirmed in 3 more departments of the peninsula: Artibonite, Nord and Nord-Est, in the north of the island. The first outbreak in Haiti was discovered in a farm near Anse-a-Pitre city in Sud-Est province, very close to the border with the Dominican Republic. Together with the initial case, it brings the total amount of reports to 11 from Haiti.

The 10 new cases were first discovered in the summer, with 2 in Artibonite department, 3 in Nord department, and 5 in Nord-Est department. Unlike the discovery in August when a group of 2,500 pigs was found susceptible, these 10 outbreaks happened at smaller sites, the largest having 17 pigs on-site, the smallest one only 3. The OIE was informed several weeks later.

India: Scrub Typhus

Close to 500 cases of scrub typhus have been reported from various districts of Odisha this year, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dr Bharati Pravin Pawar informed the Parliament.

In a written reply to a question by Congress MP Saptagiri Ulaka, the minister said the center was aware of the occurrence of the scrub typhus disease in the state. "In 2021, a total of 497 cases of scrub typhus have been reported from various districts of Odisha. Nabarangpur has reported 43 cases this year," he said.

In view of rising trends of scrub typhus, an advisory was issued by National Center for Disease Control in September to all states/UTs regarding containment measures for the prevention of the occurrence and management of the outbreaks.

Scrub typhus, also known as bush typhus, is caused by a bacteria called Orientia tsutsugamushi. It spreads to people through bite of infected chiggers (larval mites). The most common symptoms of scrub typhus include fever, headache, body aches, and sometimes rash.

Ghana: Yellow Fever

Ghana has recorded 46 Yellow Fever deaths, with 102 confirmed cases out of about 600 suspected cases recorded.

The latest death was recorded Dec. 9.

The outbreak, first recorded in October, is now in 4 regions: Savannah, Upper West, Bono, and Oti regions.

Dr. Dennis Laryea, Acting Head of Disease Surveillance at the Ghana Health Service (GHS), told the Ghana News Agency, in Accra that although the YF infections were gradually reducing, the Service was still recording some suspected cases.

"The outbreak started in West and North Gonja, but we have not recorded any case from these 2 districts over a period. We are, however, recording a few cases from Central Gonja, Bole, and Sawla-Tuna-Kaba districts," he said.

Dr. Laryea said the GHS had done an elaborate vaccination campaign in the areas at risk and would by next week receive a donation of about 400 000 doses of YF vaccines from the World Health Organization (WHO) to expand the YF vaccination drive.

He said the drive would target about 600,000 unvaccinated persons in districts of concern.

Brazil: Yellow Fever

A monkey has died of yellow fever in Santa Catarina, rekindling the alert for the disease in the state.

The case was confirmed by the Epidemiological Surveillance Dec. 10; vaccination coverage in the state is below that recommended by the Ministry of Health.

Directorate of Epidemiological Surveillance of Santa Catarina confirmed the death of a monkey as a result of the yellow fever virus in Pedras Grandes, in the south of the state.

With this, the State has 625 cases of epizootics notified this year alone, of which 137 were confirmed with yellow fever.

In relation to human cases, there was a record of 8 cases of the disease, with 3 deaths. None of the human cases had a vaccine record against the disease.

The period of greatest transmission of yellow fever occurs between the months of December to May, due to favorable climatic and environmental conditions for the reproduction of the mosquito that transmits the disease.

United States: Tick-borne Diseases

The spread of the black-legged tick, the primary vector for the pathogen that causes Lyme disease, may be facilitated in Pennsylvania by animals that people rarely associate with it -- black bears, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

In a recently published study, the researchers reported on the presence, abundance, and spatial distribution of ticks on black bears, with an eye toward better understanding the bears' role in tick ecology and dispersal and improving on-host surveillance techniques for ticks.

"American black bear populations in the Northeast have been rising substantially since the 1980s," said lead researcher Hannah Tiffin, dual-title doctoral degree candidate in entomology and in international agriculture and development. "Pennsylvania has seen a dramatic increase in bear numbers, with the estimated population doubling between the late 1980s and 2001 and continuing to rise in the last 20 years."

During roughly the same time frame, she noted, tick-borne diseases in humans have risen significantly, with the number of cases reported to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nearly tripling between 2004 and 2017. Lyme disease, which is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted primarily by the black-legged tick Ixodes scapularis, is the most frequently reported vector-borne disease in the United States. Pennsylvania leads the nation in reported Lyme cases.

"To date, most wildlife studies of black-legged ticks have looked at 2 species -- the white-tailed deer and the white-footed mouse," Tiffin said. "As a result, there's a lack of research on other animal species in terms of their role in tick dispersal, their suitability as hosts, and their status as reservoirs of disease pathogens."

Zimbabwe: Anthrax

From the beginning of the year, health officials in Zimbabwe reported 212 human anthrax cases. No deaths have been reported. The latest cases were reported in early November -- in Gokwe North District (2), Gokwe South District (4) in Midlands Province, Goromonzi District (1) in Mashonaland East Province, Hurungwe District (1) and Makonde District (1) in Mashonaland West Province [9 cases total].

The anthrax outbreak started in September 2019 affecting mainly Buhera and Gokwe North and South districts. Since the start of the outbreak, 979 cases, including 3 deaths have been reported.

There are no reports of person-to-person transmission of anthrax. People get anthrax by handling contaminated animal or animal products, consuming undercooked meat of infected animals and more recently, intentional release of spores.

Anthrax is a bacterial pathogen in livestock and wild animals. Ruminants such as bison, cattle, sheep and goats are highly susceptible, and horses can also be infected. Anthrax is a very serious disease of livestock because it can potentially cause the rapid loss of a large number of animals in a very short time. Affected animals are often found dead with no illness detected.

When conditions become favorable, the spores germinate into colonies of bacteria. An example would be a grazing cow ingests spores that in the cow, germinate, grow, spread and eventually kill the animal. Anthrax is caused by the bacterium, _Bacillus anthracis_. This spore-forming bacteria can survive in the environment for decades because of its ability to resist heat, cold, drying, etc. This is usually the infectious stage of anthrax.


December 10, 2021

United States: Legionellosis

A central Indiana prison inmate has died after being among those confirmed ill with Legionnaire's disease amid an outbreak of the bacterial lung infection at the facility, state prison officials said. The inmate, a 38-year-old man from the Pendleton Correctional Facility, died Dec. 3 at a hospital, the Indiana Department of Correction said.

The agency had announced that 3 inmates had confirmed cases of the illness and 2 others had probable cases. All 5 inmates had been taken to hospitals for treatment, and prison system and health officials were working to determine the source of the outbreak at the facility about 25 miles northeast of Indianapolis. The 5 sickened men all live in 2 units of the maximum security facility.

The prison's hot water has been turned off during the investigation into the source of the illness, but the prison's toilets and drinking water are not affected, officials said. The Legionella bacteria are spread through inhaled water droplets, such as mist or steam, and not person-to-person contact.

Chad: Hepatitis

A hepatitis E outbreak had been declared by Chadian health authorities in mid-November 2021 in Sategui health area, Lai health district in the Tandjilé region. As of Nov. 20, there have been 377 suspected cases and 2 deaths reported. Among those affected, the majority have been men with 216 cases and the most affected age-group has been less than 10 years of age with 90 cases.

Hepatitis E is endemic in Chad, particularly in the Tandjilé region, which previously experienced large-scale outbreaks in 2017 and 2018. Poor hygiene and sanitation conditions coupled with limited access to safe water are risk factors for outbreaks in this region. All the 6 villages that reported cases have few improved water points that are below the standards of 500 inhabitants per water point. The ongoing floods in the affected southern part of the country may affect the quality of the outbreak response.

People are infected primarily through the fecal-oral route, usually through contaminated water or food. There have been several cases of hepatitis E infection in France due to eating raw figatellu, which is made with pig liver. Much like hepatitis A, the fatality rate is low with the exception of pregnant women, in whom it can reach 20% among those infected in the third trimester. Liver failure is a frequent outcome with pregnant women.

Australia: Ross River Virus

The number of Ross River virus cases in Mandurah has surged more than 61% since the last season, but the Peel Mosquito Management Group (PMMG) says this is a "positive and pleasing outcome for the city."

There were 47 reported cases of the mosquito-borne virus for the 2020-21 season compared to 29 for 2019-20, a 61.7% increase in one season. The Peel region also experienced a rise in numbers, increasing by 67.6% to 105 cases up from 71 the season prior.

La Niña conditions, a weather event which sees cooler surface waters in the Pacific Ocean, provided an ideal environment for saltmarsh mosquitoes to breed more rapidly.

Despite the surge in cases, PMMG reported only 2 months of the season recorded case numbers above the moving average for the region. The PMMG has attributed this "pleasing outcome" to the sophisticated mosquito management activities undertaken by the City of Mandurah, the WA Department of Health and the PMMG.

The group manages mosquito populations through aerial larviciding, a treatment that has little impact on the environment and residents. Across the 2020-21 season, the PMMG covered its largest area ever with a total 6808.1 hectares [16 823 acres] treated with the mosquito-killing agent.

India: Peste des Petits Ruminants

Goats kept by a man in Dahod have been isolated after one of the animals died due to Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR), better known as sheep and goat plague. The viral disease is extremely contagious and can infect and even kill large parts of herds of animals like sheep and goats.

This is the first time that a PPR case has been reported in the Dahod district. Officials said that the infected goat belonged to a man who rears animals for meat. The man got alarmed after one of his goats died after suffering from cough and cold for a couple of days along with loose motions.

The man insisted that a test should be conducted to identify the ailment. The tests revealed that the goat was suffering from PPR.

Animal husbandry officer Kamleshgiri Gosai said that the man whose goat had died was asked to keep his remaining goats in the shed itself and not take them out for grazing. "This has been done to ensure that if more goats are infected, they do not spread it to other goats outside," he said.

Cameroon: Cholera

At least 8 people have died and more than 180 others are infected in a cholera epidemic that is sweeping across 2 health districts in Cameroon's Southwest region, international medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said Nov. 30.

"The Ekondo Titi Health District has reported more than 160 cases of cholera, with 62 patients hospitalized at the Cholera Treatment Unit, 15 patients treated at the Oral Rehydration points, and 5 deaths recorded. The Bakassi Health district has also reported 29 suspected cases with 3 deaths. The condition is particularly worrying because it means that cholera has spread in the community," Donatien Tshishimbi, MSF Medical Coordinator said in a statement. The population is vulnerable to infectious diseases like cholera because access to health care is difficult and the living conditions are poor, MSF said.

The international medical charity has established 2 cholera treatment centers and dispatched a team of health personnel to the affected areas to provide free treatment to the population. In early November 2021, the country's health authorities in the region warned that cholera was spreading in parts of the region accompanied by a rise in COVID-19 cases.

France: Avian Influenza

In France, the latest epidemic has hit a farm with laying hens. It is the first case in a commercial livestock farm.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) was detected Nov. 27 on a laying hen farm in the Nord department, just a few kilometers from the Belgian border. Investigations were currently underway to trace the route of infection.

According to the ministry, the flock was culled and the farm immediately disinfected. A protection zone and a surveillance zone had been set up around the outbreak. This is connected with strict biosecurity regulations for poultry farmers and a transport ban for birds.

The alliance of the Confederation Paysanne (Conf), an association of small farmers, and the Federation of Organic Farmers (FNAB), meanwhile, stressed that the farm in question was a commercial one with 160,000 birds and was also located in a region with close links to Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands. The organizations had jointly lodged a complaint with the Supreme Administrative Court in order to bring down the new disease protection requirements. Among other things, they see high hurdles for exemptions from the stall obligation endangering animal welfare and the existence of free-range farms.

According to Conf and FNAB, there is scientific evidence that the risk of introducing avian influenza into free-range systems is generally low. The spread of the disease depends mainly on the density of the flock, and the transport of goods and animals and the introduction of people also play an important role in the spread of the virus. It is also criticized that exemptions from the obligation to keep animals in confined areas are only possible if a veterinarian has previously certified that the animals are suffering from the disease.

France: Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

In early November, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease killed a retired research technician from the National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment who had worked at Toulouse in contact with biological tissues infected with prions.

In all likelihood, this woman belonged to the Host-Pathogen Interactions (IHAP) research unit. Created in 2003 on the campus of the National Veterinary School of Toulouse (Envt) and attached to the animal health department of INRA, the main objective of this laboratory is "to understand the interactions between pathogenic microorganisms and their hosts".

Costa Rica: Malaria

Costa Rica health authorities report an increase in malaria cases in the last 4 weeks in the Northern Zone, prompting reinforcement of the epidemiological fence operation in the border corridor.

Local health services confirmed that there was a total of 138 cases as of Nov. 27, of which 13 are relapses in people infected with the disease.

Authorities of the Ministry of Health, the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS), with the support of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), maintain an epidemiological fence in the communities of Medio Queso, San Gerardo, Cuatro Esquinas, Isla Chica, La Trocha, Las Delicias, and Coquital, with the aim of preventing the cases from spreading to nearby places or to other territories in the region.

Vector officials of the Ministry of Health and Primary Care Technical Assistants (ATAPS) of the CCSS, concentrate their work on a house-to-house visit sweep to detect people with symptoms, take blood samples, supply medicines to suspicious people, deliver awnings and fumigate areas near the home. Another team of medical professionals and health planning professionals is in charge of the analysis, follow-up, and evolution of the reported cases.

Germany: African Swine Fever

A case of African swine fever (ASF) has been reported in a wild boar in the eastern state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

The case was recorded by the ministry of agriculture for the neighboring state of Brandenburg, reported Reuters.

It's not the first case reported in the region. In mid-November, Germany's federal agriculture ministry confirmed a case on a farm in the same state.

So far, most of the cases occurred in the eastern states of Brandenburg and Saxony.

Kenya: Lumpy Skin Disease

The sight of lumps on her cow's skin worries a livestock farmer and resident of Seretunin in Baringo Central.

What she is anxious about is a viral disease commonly known as Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD), which affects cattle.

"I lost my calf. At first I did not understand what was happening to the calf; it was only 6 months old. It had some nasal discharge and was hyper-salivating," the woman told the Sunday Standard.

On Dec. 3, 2 cows showed the same symptoms after the death of the calf, which prompted her to seek help from a local veterinarian who diagnosed the cows with LSD.

Farmers in the area are now on high alert due to the LSD outbreak, which has already claimed the lives of several livestock.

Lumpy skin disease is an infectious disease in cattle caused by a virus of the family Poxviridae, also known as Neethling virus. The disease is characterized by fever, enlarged superficial lymph nodes and multiple nodules on the skin and mucous membranes.

Mongolia: Foot and Mouth Disease

A case of FMD was registered in Burentogtokh soum of Khuvsgul aimag on Dec. 2. As of Dec. 9, a total of 7 outbreaks have been registered in the aimag, of which 3 are in the Burentogtokh soum and 4 in the Tsagaan-Uul soum. There are 12,442 cattle, 312 camels, 131,076 sheep, and 63,023 goats kept in 353 households in the hotspot and suspected areas, totaling 206,853 head of livestock. Of these, 640 cattle, 801 sheep and 98 goats from 53 households, a total of 1,539 head of livestock, were found infected. According to the Veterinary Department of Khuvsgul aimag, the number of animals vaccinated in the Sangiin Dalai bagh of Burentogtokh soum totalled 27,869, consisting of 1,542 cattle, 18,435 sheep and 7,892 goats from 50 households.

The continuing FMD epizootic in Mongolia started on Aug. 6. According to the media, citing Mongolia's General Authority for Veterinary Services, as of mid-October 2021, more than half of Mongolia's 21 provinces had been infected. The identification of the disease in Khuvsgul testifies to a further spread of the virus.

December 3, 2021

United Kingdom: Avian Influenza

A case of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 has been confirmed in commercial poultry near Pokesdown, Bournemouth. Temporary Control Zones of 3 km and 10 km have been put in force around an area centered on Castlemain Avenue. This is the first outbreak in the south west during the resurgence of the disease that began in October.

Bird flu has been confirmed in captive birds and commercial and non-commercial poultry in Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Essex, Lancashire, North Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Cumbria, Cheshire and Norfolk. An Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) was declared across the whole of the country to mitigate the risk of the disease spreading. It is now a legal requirement for all bird keepers in the UK to follow strict biosecurity measures.

Keepers with more than 500 birds will need to restrict access for non-essential people on their sites, workers will need to change clothing and footwear before entering bird enclosures and site vehicles will need to be cleaned and disinfected regularly to limit the risk of the disease spreading.

Backyard owners with smaller numbers of poultry including chickens, ducks and geese must also take steps to limit the risk of the disease spreading to their animals.

Germany: African Swine Fever

There are three further officially confirmed cases of African swine fever (ASF) in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. The Friedrich Loeffler Institute on the Riems [FLI] has diagnosed the disease in wild boars.

The animals belong to a group of wild boars that were killed a week ago during a driven hunt near Marnitz (Ludwigslust-Parchim district) on the state border with Brandenburg. A dead infected piglet was discovered. As a result, all 17 wild boars killed there were examined. Three of them have now also tested positive. ASF is not dangerous to humans, but infected pigs usually die.

The Ludwigslust-Parchim district has already set up zones in which strict regulations apply. This also includes a restricted area that unauthorized persons are no longer allowed to enter. A protective fence is now being erected there. Construction has already started. All wild boars are now to be tracked down and killed in this region in order to limit the risk of further infections as far as possible.

Cameroon: Yellow Fever

A vast immunization campaign to fight against yellow fever will soon be in operation, officials of the Expanded Program on Immunization have said. The vaccination campaign is in view after the Ministry of Public Health announced at least 13 deaths as well as 38 new infections have been recorded.

The resurgence of the disease in the country is affecting at least 9 regions, with only the South-West yet to present a case. Thus, to fight against the disease, health experts and community mobilisers have been on the field to educate the public on risk factors as well as prevention.

To prepare the ground for vaccination, the Ministry of Public Health as well as other partners have been carrying out surveys and doing detailed field investigations to assess the magnitude to the outbreak of the disease while equally searching cases in communities and assessing the risk of transmission.

According to Dr. Lihinag Li Meng Sylvain, field epidemiologist and senior support staff at the central technical group at Expanded Program on Immunization, the vaccination exercise will go a long way to stop any further spread of the disease. "Yellow fever affects everyone who is not vaccinated; thus, it is imperative to get vaccinated or more cases of yellow fever may sprout up," he said.


United States: West Nile virus

As of Nov. 23, health officials in Maricopa County, Arizona have reported a total of 1,091 human West Nile virus (WNV) cases in 2021. This total accounts for roughly half the total cases in the United States this year. The previous annual record of 355 cases in Arizona was set in 2004.

County officials also report 79 deaths due to the mosquito-borne disease. In all of 2000, Maricopa County saw 3 cases and one death. Melissa Kretschmer with the Maricopa County Health Department said a dry 2020 season followed by this very wet monsoon season contributed to more standing water, leading to more mosquitoes.

Statewide, Arizona has reported 1,233 total confirmed and probable cases and 90 deaths. Pinal and Pima counties recorded cases in the double digits with 94 and 74 total cases, respectively.

West Nile virus is typically spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. Although it can cause severe disease, only about 1 in 5 of those infected will develop any symptoms at all. Those who do develop symptoms usually experience a flulike illness including fever, headache, body aches and muscle weakness.

Ghana: Yellow Fever

The number of casualties recorded from the outbreak of yellow fever in some parts of the country has risen to 39. Apart from the Savannah and Upper West Regions where cases were initially reported, the Ghana Health Service (GHS) says others have been recorded in the Northern, Oti and Bono regions.

The director-general, Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye who made the disclosure, said the Service was intensifying vaccination campaigns on the disease in reporting regions to control its spread and save lives. He was speaking at the opening of a 3-day senior managers meeting for top-level management members within the health sector in Accra Nov. 25. The meeting, which is the second of its kind, will discuss pertinent issues affecting the sector for policy planning and budgeting for service delivery sustainability. The meeting's theme is "Improving service delivery in a pandemic; the role of participatory planning and budgeting".

Dr. Kuma-Aboagye said as much as the GHS deployed COVID-19 vaccines, other life-saving vaccines to protect the populace against other infectious diseases would be pursued. "To control these diseases, there is renewed high-level commitment to obtaining sufficient vaccines to make vaccines a national public good. We will continue to implore the use of enhanced protocols to reduce rate of infections, admissions and deaths.”

Guyana: Malaria

The Guyana minister of health, Frank Anthony, confirmed on Nov. 23 that Venezuelans who entered Guyana through the town of Port Kaituma in the northwest of the South American country, have been diagnosed with malaria. The minister was part of the team of officials who traveled to the area for a first-hand assessment of the needs of citizens arriving from the Bolivarian country.

Frank Anthony had indicated at a press conference on Nov. 22 that Venezuelans are guaranteed health care, after Guyana media reported the entry of people through the town of Puerto Kaituma, in north west Guyana. He reported that about 200 people, part of 25 families from Venezuela, had settled in the town of Anabisi, an area near Puerto Kaituma. He said that, in addition to malaria, several other diseases such as respiratory infections, conjunctivitis, and diarrhea were detected among immigrants and pointed out that a large number of them were caused by limited access to drinking water. There are also cases of poor nutrition, a problem that affects children especially.

Tunisia: Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease

On Oct. 23, Tunisia officially reported to OIE 4 epizootic hemorrhagic disease virus (EHDV) outbreaks in cattle located in Kasserine, Ariana, and El Kef governorates. The results of gene sequencing aren't available. Outbreaks in cattle were also recorded in Siliana governorate. Cases in wild ruminants (deer) were recorded in Jendouba governorate.

EHDV serotype 6 emerged for the first time in Tunisia in 2006, almost simultaneously with Morocco and Algeria. During this first outbreak, clinical cases were reported in cattle herds. In Tunisia, the previous occurrence dates from September 2015, when a bovine outbreak was recorded in Mahdia governorate.

Samples from affected animals were submitted to the OIE reference laboratory in Teramo (IZS, 'G. Caporale', Abruzzo and Molise) for serotyping and gene sequencing; results are pending. According to media reports, there is an ongoing epizootic of another orbivirus, bluetongue (BT), in Tunisia, affecting sheep and cattle. Most of the (27) BT virus serotypes cause viraemia in cattle with very mild or no clinical signs; BTV-8 is exceptional. The results of the laboratory tests are expected to determine the definitive diagnosis of cattle presenting clinical signs in Tunisia.

Libya: Rift Valley Fever

The agricultural sector in Benghazi revealed Nov. 26 the presence of outbreaks of Rift Valley fever in the Al-Wahat region.

The coordinator of the agricultural sector in Benghazi, Miftah Al-Khashmi, met Nov. 25 with the head of the National Center for Animal Health, Zakaria Al-Khattal. The meeting took place in the presence of Abdel Hakim Al-Misrati, head of the Benghazi Agricultural Police. The meeting discussed the presence of some Rift Valley fever outbreaks in the Al-Wahat region.

The meeting dealt with how to coordinate actions with the competent authorities to combat this disease that affects animals and causes infection in humans.

Malaysia: Japanese Encephalitis

The Kedah Health Department confirmed that 2 cases of Japanese Encephalitis (JE) infection have been detected in the Kota Setar district, with both cases involving death.

State Health director Dr Othman Warijo said the first case was reported on Nov. 18 followed by the second case Nov. 25, and the department declared an outbreak of JE in the district that day.

In this regard, he said the cumulative number of JE cases reported in the state as of Nov. 25 was 10 cases compared to 8 cases in the same period last year, an increase of 25% with 3 deaths out of the 10 cases.

"Outbreak control activities were implemented immediately," he said in a statement last night. "Among the control measures implemented by the Kota Setar District Health Office and the State Health Department are vector control through thermal space spraying and larvaciding in patients' residential localities as well as outbreak localities that are at risk.

Senegal: Rift Valley Fever

An outbreak of Rift Valley fever (RVF) is ongoing in Senegal, which was declared by health authorities after confirmation of the first case on Nov. 10 by the Pasteur Institute of Dakar.

As of Nov. 18, a total of 3 cases and zero deaths are reported in the health districts of Gossas and Diofior, in the Fatick region.

Rift Valley Fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic fever that causes illness in animals (such as cattle, buffalo, sheep, goats, and camels).

Most people with RVF have either no symptoms or a mild illness with fever, weakness, back pain, and dizziness. A small percentage (8-10%) of people with RVF develop much more severe symptoms, including eye disease, hemorrhage (excessive bleeding), and encephalitis (swelling of the brain).

United States: Legionellosis

The Indiana Department of Correction [IDOC] announced that an outbreak of legionnaires' disease has been confirmed at the Pendleton Correctional Facility. 3 cases have been confirmed, and 2 additional cases have been identified to be probable.

Legionnaires' disease is a very serious type of pneumonia caused by bacteria called Legionella. Outbreaks are often associated with large or complex water systems, such as showers, fountains, and hot tubs.

All 5 incarcerated individuals are receiving treatment and are hospitalized. Others who show symptoms will be tested and treated in the same way as needed.

Legionnaires' disease is serious, with 1 in 10 people who get the disease dying from infection. It can be treated with antibiotics and can make a full recovery, especially if the individual is receiving care in a hospital.


November 19, 2021

Central African Republic: Ebola

Four people have died of hemorrhagic fever in the Central African Republic, raising suspicions of an early Ebola outbreak in that country.

The victims are located in the city of Kabo in the prefecture of Ouham-Fafa, and local doctors put forward the hypothesis of the Ebola virus. But the Minister of Health, Pierre Somse, prefers to wait for the results of the analysis of the samples before officially deciding on the nature of the disease.

Pending these results, Minister Somse calls on the Central African population to be "calm" and practice "vigilance", while reassuring them that measures are being taken to prevent the spread of the disease. The last Ebola alert in the Central African Republic dates back to August 2020 when a case was reported in Côte d'Ivoire, a country in which population movements are quite frequent.

Japan: Avian Influenza

Japan has detected its first outbreak of bird flu for the 2021 winter season, with confirmation of a case of "highly pathogenic avian influenza" [HPAI] at a poultry farm in the northeast of the country, the agriculture ministry said Nov. 10.

About 143,000 egg-laying chickens are being exterminated at the farm in Yokote city in Akita Prefecture, the ministry said in a statement on its website, adding that restricted zones up to 10 km from the site have been established.

The flu was later detected to have spread to another province of the country. An outbreak of bird flu has been confirmed at a poultry production facility in Himeji city in Hyogo province. It was reported that a large-scale disinfection work was started in the region. The state administration set up a crisis desk to decide on the measures to be taken.

Japan has temporarily suspended exports of chicken meat and eggs from all regions following the outbreak, the ministry said.

"Under the current situation in Japan, we do not believe that there is any possibility of avian influenza being transmitted to humans through the consumption of chicken meat or eggs," the ministry said.

But an increase in the number of people in China getting infected from bird flu this year is turning into a source of concern among epidemiological experts, especially as the world slowly recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.

China has reported 21 human infections with the H5N6 subtype of avian influenza in 2021 to the World Health Organization [WHO], compared with only 5 last year, with 6 dead and many of the others critically ill.

Ireland: Avian Influenza

The Department of Agriculture has confirmed a case of bird flu in County Kerry. The highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 (HPAI H5N1) was confirmed in a white-tailed sea eagle near Tarbert. The eagle was submitted to the Veterinary Laboratory in Limerick as part of the Department's wild bird avian influenza (AI) surveillance program.

The Department also confirmed that wild birds in Donegal and Offaly have also been confirmed positive for H5N1, including both mute swans and whooper swans and wild geese. One Minister for State described the confirmations as "very concerning."

Last week, a strain of the virus was detected in a peregrine falcon in County Galway. The Minister for Agriculture said it is "very unfortunate that this case has been detected in such a rare bird."

However, Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue commended the Department's wild bird AI surveillance program. "It is important that we remain vigilant, and I would also urge that flock owners should also be watchful. We should do everything that we can to ensure that potentially infected wild birds do not have contact with domestic flocks."

Ghana: Yellow Fever

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has embarked on a vaccination exercise in the Savannah Region after 16 were reported to have died of yellow fever.

The Ghana Health Service announced the outbreak of suspected yellow fever in the Savannah Region.

Yellow fever is a viral infection spread by a particular species of mosquito.

The outbreak has been recorded in the West Gonja Municipality and the North Gonja District of the region.

As of Nov. 12, the death toll had increased to 16 with others in critical condition.

To bring the outbreak under control, the Ghana Health Service has started vaccinating people in the 2 assemblies, with the hope of extending it across the region.

Thomas Suuri, the Disease Control Officer of the Ghana Health Service in the Savannah Region, says about 90% of residents in affected communities in the North Gonja District have been vaccinated.

Malaysia: Cholera

The Selangor health department has issued a statewide cholera alert to all hospitals and district health clinics, according to a circular. The circular, sighted by SAYS, is signed by Selangor health director Dr. Sha'ari Ngadiman, who said that a case of cholera in the Petaling district was detected.

According to the circular, the case involves a Malaysian citizen. "In this regard, it is hoped that all parties will take note and improve control and prevention measures more effectively in accordance with existing guidelines," it said.

No other details such as the age, gender, and condition of the patient were mentioned in the circular. Early symptoms of the disease include painless watery stool and vomiting and can lead to dehydration, circulatory collapse, and even death if left untreated.

Congo: Monkeypox

For two weeks, the population of the community of Bakongola, Ovudu grouping, Kimbombo territory in Maniema has suffered from this rare epidemic named monkeypox.

Monkeypox, a rare disease, is caused by the simian pox virus, which is structurally related to smallpox and causes a similar disease, but less severe. It is part of the group of orthopoxviruses_.

The residents who contacted the editorial staff of Netic-News are launching a cry of alarm to the authorities because the situation is becoming more and more serious.

Germany: African Swine Fever

Cases of African swine fever [ASF] have been reported in the Rostock district (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania). Following the reported death of several pigs in a fattening farm, the State Office for Agriculture, Food Safety and Fisheries examined initial samples. A PCR test led to the suspicion that the animals were infected with the ASF virus. Further investigations by the Friedrich Loeffler Institute [FLI] have now confirmed the suspicion, as reported by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL).

Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has become Germany's third federal state affected by ASF. Previously affected federal states are Brandenburg and Saxony; almost 2,700 cases of ASF have been detected there by now, most of them in wild boars.

How the animal disease entered the fattening farm is currently unknown. The FLI will now also investigate the route of the pathogen's entry into the herd. The responsible authority onsite must now order that all animals in the herd are killed and harmlessly disposed of.

Kazakhstan: Anthrax

In the Abay region of Shymkent, 4 people contracted anthrax while cutting carcasses, As it turned out, the owner sold the meat of the sick animal at a cheap price.

Experts remind that you need to buy meat only in proven places, if the seller has a medical examination and a veterinary certificate.

Anthrax is an acute infectious disease that is one of the most dangerous. A person can get infected from a sick animal. It is not transmitted from person to person. One of the main measures for the prevention of anthrax is vaccination. It applies to livestock workers, persons involved in the processing, transportation and storage of animal skins. If sick animals are found, the veterinary service should be notified for timely action.

There are several types of anthrax manifestations -- cutaneous, pulmonary, intestinal and septic form. All of them are manifested by an increase in body temperature, with damage to the lymphatic system. Mortality in the pulmonary-intestinal form is 80-100%. When the first signs of the disease appear, you must immediately contact the clinic at the place of attachment.

November 12, 2021

Cameroon: Cholera

Health workers in Cameroon are fighting a cholera outbreak that claimed 13 lives this week in 2 major cities of the central African state. The outbreak, which has affected several hundred people, comes as Cameroon prepares to host the African Football Cup of Nations, or AFCON, in about 2 months. Cameroon's health minister Manaouda Malachie in a release this week said thousands of civilians in the capital city Yaounde and Ekondo-Titi, an English-speaking western town, are threatened by cholera.

Cholera is an infectious and often fatal bacterial disease of the small intestine, typically contracted from infected water supplies and food. It causes severe vomiting and diarrhea and can kill within hours if left untreated.

Amos Kome Njikang, the medical doctor in charge of the Ekondo-Titi Hospital, dispatched health workers to the community to search for and transport cholera patients to the hospital. "We have made plans for the transportation of new cases from the community to the health facility at Bamousso. We have also tried to increase personal hygiene, hand washing, washing of whatever we consume. We are trying to tell them how to purify water before they drink."

The health ministry said several hundred patients were rushed to hospitals in Yaounde and Ekondo-Titi. The government said it recorded at least 13 cholera-related deaths in the 2 towns since [Mon 1 Nov 2021]. It is feared the outbreak may have claimed more lives in villages which lack health infrastructure. This week, the Ministry of Health said it dispatched several dozen health workers to warn civilians that eating uncooked food and unwashed fruits, or drink water that's not boiled, increases the risk of getting cholera.

Kenya: Leishmaniasis

Kenyans are now living in fear after a strange disease broke out in Tharaka Nithi County, claiming 5 lives in a matter of months. According to information from health officials, the rare and strange disease known as kala-azar has so far infected 33 individuals over the last few months. This has put the county on a high alert, taking necessary steps to contain the outbreak.

Kala-azar, scientifically referred to as visceral leishmaniasis (VL), is characterized by irregular bouts of fever and anemia. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), kala-azar is also characterized by weight loss and enlargement of the spleen and liver.

The disease is caused by parasites and transmitted through the bites of infected female sand flies. The infection rates vary from person to person. People with HIV have a high chance of going full-blown once infested by the disease. The disease is mainly attracted by poor hygienic conditions, malnutrition, and environmental changes. However, the disease is treatable and curable once detected in its early stages.

Jordan: Foot and Mouth Disease

The Greater Amman Municipality announced the closure of the livestock market in the Sahab area for a period of 2 weeks starting on Nov. 5.  A calf in one of the stalls adjacent to the livestock market have been found infected with foot and mouth disease..

The municipality's secretariat explained, in a statement, that the decision was based on a letter from the Ministry of Agriculture. The secretariat said that "this disease does not have any impact on public health", according to the letter of the Ministry of Agriculture, and spraying and sterilization operations will be carried out during the closure period.

Deputy director of the city for health and agricultural affairs in the Amman municipality, Mervat Mhairat, indicated through the "Kingdom" that the decision was a precautionary and preventive measure to prevent the disease from spreading to neighboring farms on the site, especially since the area is agricultural. She said that the disease has no effects on public health, but epidemiologically, if there is an infected area, the disease can be transmitted through clothing or droplets.

"Our role in the Amman municipality is only the halal market, which was established to serve farmers in the region to facilitate buying and selling operations. As for neighboring farms, it is one of the tasks of the Ministry of Agriculture -- and it takes the precautionary and preventive measures, including vaccination, monitoring, treatment and assistance to farmers," according to Mhairat. Mhairat expressed her hope that no other cases would be detected.

Bulgaria: African Swine Fever

Bulgarian veterinary authorities reported on Nov. 8 a new outbreak of African swine fever [ASF] at an industrial farm that has a total of 180 pigs in the southern village of Radinovo.

The outbreak is the second at an industrial farm in a Balkan country this year, the Bulgarian Food Safety Agency said.

All the pigs at the farm will be culled, the agency said, and a 3 km quarantine zone set up around it to stop the spread of the disease, which is incurable in pigs but harmless to humans.

In August, the agency had to cull some 13,000 pigs at an industrial farm in the central village of Apriltsi after an ASF outbreak. The agency has reported 5 outbreaks of the disease in backyard farms in 2021.

Russia: Anthrax

The Yamal Peninsula in the Russian Federation experienced a massive outbreak of anthrax in reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) in July-August 2016, with 2650 (6.46% of the total susceptible population) animals infected, of which 2350 died (case fatality rate of 88.67%). In our study, we analyzed climatic and epidemiological factors that could have triggered the outbreak.

The cancelation of reindeer vaccination against anthrax in 2007 resulted in an increase in population susceptibility. In response to the outbreak, total vaccination of all susceptible animals was resumed. To assess the vaccination effectiveness, we tested 913 samples of blood serum taken from vaccinated reindeer using an antigenic erythrocyte diagnostic kit to detect specific anti-anthrax antibodies via an indirect hemagglutination assay (IHA) 9 months after vaccination. We found that 814 samples had sufficiently high levels of anti-anthrax antibodies to indicate a protection level of 89% (95% confidence interval: 87-91%) of the whole reindeer population.

Venezuela: Leishmaniasis

The board of the organization of Médicos Unidos de Venezuela [MUV/United Physicians of Venezuela] reports cases of leishmaniasis and other diseases in the rural areas of Lara state.

They indicate that patients could not be treated with the urgency required, since the health personnel has not been able to move due to lack of fuel for transportation.

Dr. Luzmila Leal, director of the MUV, added that health programs have slowed down. Likewise, the epidemiologists consulted by that institution have confirmed that there are cases of leishmaniasis in Duaca, Sanare, and Macuto; and that the disease has been there for many years.

However, lately, there have been reports of infected people in the town of La Ruezga in Barquisimeto. Despite this, health personnel have not been able to provide care and implement a control program. "The official agencies have not been able to send staff to critical sites, due to the lack of transportation and fuel," said MUV. Leal explained that "it is not that the programs have been paralyzed, but that they have been slowed down.

United States: Plague

A domestic cat in Evergreen tested positive for bubonic plague last week, according to Jefferson County Public Health.

The health department said the cat stays near Bergen Mountain Road and Stagecoach Boulevard, close to Elk Meadow Park. It tested positive for plague Nov. 5, according to the health department.

The health department said this is the first case of plague confirmed in the county this year. The cat is suspected to have been infected by an encounter with a sick rodent, possibly a rat.

"While plague is a serious disease, and cases of animal-borne disease in household pets is never something we like to see, it is normal and expected for some animals to contract plague in Jefferson County each year," Jim Rada, director of Environmental Health Services at Jefferson County Public Health, said in a release. "The good news is modern antibiotics are effective against plague, and as long as it is treated promptly, severe complications, illness, or death can be avoided."

India: Newcastle Disease

Around 70 demoiselle cranes, popularly known as Kurjan in western Rajasthan, have been found dead in Kaparda village near Jodhpur over the last 3 days, with forest department officials blaming the highly contagious Newcastle disease which affects the respiratory tracks of the birds. However, tests on viscera samples that can establish this are awaited, and at least one expert believes the deaths are actually the result of pesticide poisoning.

The officials said another 150 birds are stranded because they cannot fly due to the disease.

The Newcastle disease is caused by a virus belonging to the paramyxovirus family. The forest department has sent the viscera samples of the birds to IVRI Bhopal for further investigation. DN Pandey, the head of the forest department, said only the report will provide a clear picture.

Congo: Typhoid

In a follow-up on the typhoid outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), from the beginning of 2021 through the end of September 2021, 1,121,104 total typhoid cases have been reported, including 19.734 confirmed cases. The death toll from typhoid in the DRC is now 411. In 2020, a total of 715,920 suspected cases of typhoid fever were reported, including 178 deaths.

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 carry the bacteria in their bloodstream and intestinal tract. In addition, a small number of persons, called carriers, recover from typhoid fever but continue to carry the bacteria. 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.

Ghana: Yellow Fever

The death toll in the yellow fever outbreak in the Savannah Region has risen to 14. The casualties comprise one male adult and 13 children.

Some 19 others are still on admission at the West Gonja Hospital from 2 districts in the Region. The affected districts, which include West and North Gonja Municipal and Districts, respectively, also recorded 65 cases.

In an interview with JoyNews, the Savannah Regional Director of Ghana Health Services, Dr. Chrysantus Kuubio said there is no need for any panic situation from the public as the situation is currently under control. He added, "We have so far suspected 65 cases and 14 deaths, and 7 of these deaths have been recorded in West Gonja Municipal and the other 7 too from the North Gonja District."

"And the initial communication has been 8 deaths, but surveillance is such that we visit these communities where we have these reported cases and also check to see if there are deaths that have not been reported at the facility," Dr. Kuubio stated. Larabanga, Logto, Canteen, Kamakura, Sori no. 1 and no. 5 are among the affected communities.

November 5, 2021

Congo: Ebola

This week, Doctors Without Borders launched Ebola virus disease management activities in the Beni health zone of the Democratic Republic of Congo, supporting the efforts of the Ministry of Health. In the Butsili and Kanzulinzuli health centers, the response focuses on triage, detection, and isolation of suspected cases. Teams, alongside those of the Ministry of Health, carry out outpatient consultations for patients of all ages admitted to the isolation unit.

The teams will try to ensure the rehabilitation and structural improvements of the two health centers and assist with sustaining the supply of medicines and food for the patients admitted to the isolation center and their companions. In addition, they will provide technical support to monitor community activities in order to locate and identify contact cases in the community, but also social monitoring of all high-risk contacts through the distribution of kits including telephones and food to make it easier for people suspected to have Ebola to self-isolate and limit viral transmission. People at high risk, including contacts of confirmed cases and first responders, will be vaccinated to contain the spread of the virus.

Since Oct. 8, when the first positive case was detected, 5 new cases were confirmed, including 3 deaths, in the Butsili health center. A previous epidemic was officially declared over on May 3 in Butsili, with an assessment of 5 confirmed cases including 3 deaths and 308 contacts followed in the area, according to data from health authorities.

China; Avian Influenza

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health is closely monitoring a human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) on the Mainland, and again urged the public to maintain strict personal, food and environmental hygiene both locally and during travel.

The case involves a 60-year-old woman living in Changde in Hunan Province. She is a farmer and had exposure to dead poultry. She developed symptoms and was admitted for treatment. The patient is in critical condition.

Since 2014, 48 human cases of avian influenza A(H5N6) have been reported by Mainland health authorities.

"All novel influenza A infections, including H5N6, are notifiable infectious diseases in Hong Kong," a spokesman for the CHP said.

Travellers to the Mainland or other affected areas must avoid visiting wet markets, live poultry markets or farms. They should be alert to the presence of backyard poultry when visiting relatives and friends. They should also avoid purchasing live or freshly slaughtered poultry, and avoid touching poultry/birds or their droppings. They should strictly observe personal and hand hygiene when visiting any place with live poultry.

United States: West Nile Virus

An unvaccinated 9-year-old crossbred Belgian/Standardbred gelding in Wisconsin has died after contracting West Nile virus -- the state's first confirmed case of the virus in a horse since 2018.

The disease can cause brain inflammation in horses and people, according to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP), which confirmed the case.

However, the virus cannot pass directly between people and horses -- the only route of transmission is from a mosquito bite, the DATCP says.

The Crawford County horse death is the only confirmed case -- human or equine -- in the state this year, according to the state Department of Health Services.

Mosquitoes transmit the virus from birds, which are natural reservoirs for the West Nile virus. Because humans and equines acquire the virus from mosquitoes, the threat normally occurs when mosquitoes are most active, from mid-to-late summer until the first killing frost.

United States: Swine Flu

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 2 previous human infections with novel influenza A viruses.

One infection with an influenza A(H1N1) variant (A(H1N1)v) virus was reported by North Dakota that occurred during the 2020-21 influenza season. And one infection with influenza (A(H3N2)v) virus was reported by Ohio that occurred during the current 2021-22 influenza season.

Both patients are younger than 18 years of age, were not hospitalized, and have recovered or are recovering from their illness. One of the patients had close contact with swine before illness onset.

The other patient had no known swine contact or attendance at agricultural exhibits where swine were present. This finding indicates that limited human-to-human transmission potentially occurred. Moreover, no ongoing human-to-human transmission has been identified associated with either patient.

Finally, it is essential to note that in most cases, variant influenza viruses have not shown the ability to spread efficiently and sustainably from person to person. When an influenza virus that normally circulates in swine (but not people) is detected in a person, it is called a "variant influenza virus." The first swine influenza virus (swine flu) was found in pigs in 1918.

Netherlands: Avian Influenza

The Dutch Food and Consumer Safety Authority (NVWA) culled 107,000 chickens due to a bird flu outbreak at a large poultry farm in Grootschermer in the municipality of Alkmaar, Minister of Agriculture Carola Schouten wrote in a letter to the Tweede Kamer.

Schouten wrote it concerns a "broiler farm with 3 sheds: 2 sheds with 40,000 animals and one shed with 27,000 animals. In one barn, the animals showed signs of bird flu," Schouten said.

The samples taken show that there is, indeed, a case of contamination.

Near the infected farm there is another chicken farm with 18,700 broilers. According to the agriculture minister, it is "responsible" not to clear this company preventively because no other commercial poultry farm is located within a radius of 10 kilometers "where the spread could occur."

Canada: Bluetongue

The Southern Okanagan Sportsmen's Association has issued an update on deaths plaguing bighorn sheep populations in the South Okanagan [British Columbia].

A total of 20 wild bighorn sheep were found dead near Grand Forks in August, after an outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease, also known as bluetongue.

The association recorded a rise in sheep mortalities near Vaseaux Lake and Okanagan Falls in late September and early October.

In a written update from Craig McLean, a wildlife biologist in the Okanagan region, he states that the findings so far indicate that a handful of dead sheep that were brought into the lab have been confirmed to have bluetongue.

But the total number of South Okanagan bighorn sheep lost is not fully known at this time.

"With regards to the South Okanagan bighorn sheep, we have lost some animals from the meta population but at this time we don't have an overall understanding of impacts," McLean wrote.

United States: Legionellosis

Washington County, Ore., Public Health is investigating 6 cases of Legionnaires' disease reported within the last week in the Murrayhill area of Beaverton. Four people have been hospitalized. The county said those infected range in age from late 40s to early 80s and live within 2 miles of Murray Boulevard and Scholls Ferry Road.

Health officials have not identified the source of the infection and want to warn people in the area to look out for symptoms. Washington County Public Health is working with the Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to collect samples and conduct tests to determine the sources of the exposure.

Legionnaires' disease is a type of pneumonia caused by Legionella bacteria found naturally in the environment. Common sources of infection include hot tubs, hot water tanks, large air conditioning and plumbing systems, and fountains. People can become infected by breathing in droplets from contaminated water, according to Washington County Public Health.

United States: Hepatitis A

The Roanoke Valley, Va., health district announced Friday, that a second adult died from hepatitis A complications in an outbreak linked to Famous Anthony's restaurant. The person was hospitalized with complications from the virus, which causes inflammation of the liver. Roanoke City and Alleghany Health Districts officials said it would not release further information about the individual due to privacy reasons.

Officials have identified 49 confirmed cases, including 31 hospitalizations. A small number of cases are still under investigation, but no new cases have been reported to the health district this week

The incubation period, which accounts for the time between exposure to the virus and the onset of symptoms, passed 2 weeks ago.

"We grieve the loss of this second individual, who was loved by friends and family," health district director Cynthia Morrow said. "It is devastating that we have seen a high rate of severe disease with this outbreak."

A Roanoke County resident aged 75 died from hepatitis A complications Oct. 8. He was the first confirmed death associated with the outbreak.

United States: Hantavirus

The first human case of hantavirus infection in Riverside County, Calif., was recently confirmed by health officials.

County officials said they believe the patient might have been exposed to deer mice droppings or urine that contained hantavirus while in the Whitewater area. The individual was briefly hospitalized and is recovering at home.

Hantavirus is usually found in remote wilderness areas and impacts humans in areas where deer mice droppings are left behind, such as cabins and rest areas. Officials emphasized that hantavirus infection is rare and can cause serious illness. It can frequently become fatal, but there are steps the public can take to reduce exposure.

India: Leptospirosis

The number of confirmed leptospirosis cases in Ernakulam district has gone up in October compared to figures in September. A total of 18 cases were confirmed in September, while the number of suspected cases was 51. The number of confirmed cases was 29 as of Oct. 26. Another 48 suspected cases were also reported in the district, according to official estimates. The number of deaths due to suspected leptospirosis went up from 5 in September to 6 this month.

District Medical Officer N.K. Kuttappan said the cases would go up once the rains were over. People in rain-affected areas and those engaged in relief and cleaning work should take doxycycline tablets on the advice of health workers, he added. Dr. Kuttappan said those who died of leptospirosis were found to have not taken preventive medicines. They had also delayed receiving proper medical care.

The health authorities said people should refrain from self-medication, if they have leptospirosis symptoms. They include fever, redness in eyes, headache, skin rash, and muscle pain. Any delay in taking treatment leads to liver and kidney problems. Multi-organ failure is reported in severe cases.

Israel: Avian Influenza

A flock of breeding turkeys on a farm in Maayan-Tzvi has been found infected by HPAI H5N1. The affected flock is composed of 35-week-old birds.

Preliminary clinical signs were observed Oct. 29 in the males' coop only, numbering less than 400 birds.

The mortality increased, reaching a total of 9% during the same day. Individual animals presented neurological signs and stumbling. Necropsy revealed enteritis.

Samples were submitted to the Kimron Veterinary Institute, where HPAI H5N1 has been identified.

India: Anthrax

The district veterinary department has sprung into action following reports that anthrax had claimed the lives of 4 sheep and one goat in Warangal's Chapala Banda village. As an immediate precaution, they have launched measures to stop the spread of the bacterial disease, although veterinarians have said that this was a common infection in livestock.

A resident of Chapala Banda village in Duggondi mandal said that he had purchased 5 sheep and one goat from an Anantapur trader at the local fair, and on Oct. 26, all 6 died. Veterinary doctors collected the samples and sent them to National Center for Laboratory Animal Sciences, Hyderabad, which confirmed that they had succumbed to anthrax.

Dr. M. Balakrishan, joint director, district veterinary and animal husbandry, Warangal, said, "We immediately procured 9,000 doses of vaccination against anthrax from Bengaluru and administered them on all goats and sheep in the 5 km radius. There were a total of 7,800 goats and sheep in the mandal's 5 villages."

Ghana: Yellow Fever

Some 8 persons have died from a suspected yellow fever (YF) outbreak in the Savannah region, the Ghana Health Service (GHS) has said. This follows interim laboratory results of an unusual disease from the region, a press release from the Service, copied to the Ghana News Agency said. It said the disease was presumed to be yellow fever and that samples had been shipped for final confirmation.

The release, signed by Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, director general of the GHS, said tests for other viral hemorrhagic fevers like Ebola, Lassa, Marburg, and Zika were all negative. The affected persons were nomads in selected communities in West and North Gonja of the Savannah region, who had never been vaccinated against yellow fever. The GHS urged all persons from the region who had fever, general weakness, headache, nausea, and vomiting to immediately report to the nearest health facility. It encouraged individuals who had never been vaccinated against yellow fever to do so.

"Avoid mosquito bites by wearing clothing that covers all parts of the body and report to the nearest health facility if you have fever and, especially when you have yellowish discoloration of your eyes," the Service advised. A team of experts from the Service, Center for Disease Control (CDC) Ghana, World Health Organization (WHO) Ghana, and the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) has been deployed to support the Savannah region to investigate and institute appropriate control measures.

Sweden: Newcastle Disease

An outbreak of serious and contagious Newcastle disease has been discovered in the province of Orebro, following test results from the Swedish Veterinary Institute (SVA). "Avian influenza and Newcastle disease viruses circulate regularly in wild birds. To avoid the spread of infection to domestic birds, it is always important to ensure that direct and indirect contact between domestic and wild birds is avoided," says infection control farmer Caroline Busval, according to a press release.

The authority imposed restrictions in the area to avoid further spread. An infection control investigation has been initiated in order to ascertain the source of the infection and whether there is a risk of further spread. This disease is harmless to humans [see comment].

The disease is relatively uncommon and she is not aware of any previous outbreaks in the county, says Ella Siegvardsson, an Orebro County veterinarian.

Since 1995, 20 outbreaks of Newcastle disease have occurred in Sweden. The most recent outbreak recorded in Vastra Gotaland County was in 2018. In the previous year, farms were affected in Ostergotland County, Skane County, and Kalmar County.

Libya: Leishmaniasis

The National Center for Disease Control has confirmed that it received a report through the monitoring team in the municipality of Brak Al-Shati, Ashkada region [Wadi Ash Shati'], including the emergence of cases of leishmaniasis. The center confirmed that it had sent medical teams to the area to assess the environmental situation, and to give the necessary treatment and technical recommendations to help the families, and to take precautionary and preventive measures to avoid the disease.

The Center indicated that a medical team from the Department of Common Diseases Control at the Center went to the Ashkadeh area to assess the environmental situation and to find out the reasons behind the emergence of disease cases in the area.

The National Center for Disease Control pointed out that the initial findings revealed that they were infected with leishmaniasis, and to confirm this, samples were taken from patients and sent to the reference laboratory for common diseases at the center for examination. Animals and inside the homes of the infected cases, to catch the vector and storage of leishmaniasis, to be examined and analyzed within the reference laboratory for common diseases at the National Center for Disease Control.

United Kingdom: Avian Influenza

A case of H5N1 avian influenza has been confirmed in poultry and wild birds in north Wales, just days after the UK recorded its first bird flu outbreak of the season. The chief veterinary officer for Wales confirmed the presence of the H5N1 strain at a premises in Wrexham County.

Temporary disease control zones of 3 km and 10 km have been imposed around the premises to limit the risk of disease spread. A veterinary investigation is under way; however, dead wild birds found in the area have tested positive for the virus and are believed to be the source of infection.

The Welsh government said the risk to public health from the virus was considered to be very low. This is the first confirmation of the disease in Wales since it was discovered in pheasants in January.


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%.

Algeria: Brucellosis

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.

Mozambique: Cholera

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.

Iran: Anthrax

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.

Spain: Bluetongue

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 [2021], 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.

Italy: Legionellosis

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

October14, 2021

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.

Congo: Ebola

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.

Italy: Bluetongue

"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.

Nigeria: Dysentery

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.

Ukraine: Anthrax

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 [2021], 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 [2021] 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%.

Congo: Monkeypox

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.

Madagascar: Plague

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.

Malaysia: Leptospirosis

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.

Spain: Tularemia

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.

India: Leptospirosis

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.

Bulgaria: Anthrax

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.

Namibia: Anthrax

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.

Kyrgyzstan: Anthrax

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

England: BSE

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.

Turkey: Anthrax

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.

Chile: Hantavirus

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.

Kazakhstan: Tetanus

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.

China; Anthrax

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.

Congo: Monkeypox

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.

Madagascar: Plague

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.

Algeria: Bluetongue

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

India: Rabies

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.

Italy: Bluetongue

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."

Nigeria: Cholera

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.

Spain: Bluetongue

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.

China: Anthrax

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.

Kazakhstan: Anthrax

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.

August 27, 2021

United States: Legionellosis

A Manhattan neighborhood is now the site of a legionnaires' disease cluster. The New York City Health Department is investigating cases in an area of central Harlem, where 9 people have already ended up in the hospital since Aug. 1.

All 9 of those who have come down with the condition have been hospitalized, and 7 of them are over 50 years old -- the most vulnerable age group. As of Aug. 18, there had been no deaths associated with the cluster.

Legionnaires is not contagious, but it does spread around communities because people get sick by breathing in water vapor contaminated with Legionella bacteria. Health officials are inspecting water towers in the area to find the source of the cluster. It can be treated with antibiotics when caught early on.

Those who live in the neighborhoods impacted are told to look out for symptoms such as fever, chills, muscle aches, and cough. Because those symptoms are similar to those of COVID, and due to the ongoing spread of the virus, the Health Department recommends that those seeking care should be tested for COVID and evaluated for legionnaires' disease.

Burkina Faso: Cholera

A 46-year-old tanker driver of Malian nationality, from Niger where a cholera epidemic is currently raging, was admitted to the Health and Social Promotion Center in Tanwalbougo, where he was quickly taken care of by the team that suspected cholera and transmitted the information to the various levels of the health system.

The diagnostic and support system was immediately implemented. Patient contacts have been identified for surveillance purposes.

Confirmation of cholera was made by the National Public Health Laboratory (LNSP) which identified Vibrio cholerae O1 Ogawa from the same serogroup and serotype as that which is rife in Niger. The patient is currently in hospital at the CSPS in Tanwalbougou and his clinical condition is stable.

The Ministry of Health invites the populations to respect prevention, hygiene, and sanitation measures, particularly during this rainy season: consume drinking water, wash fruits and vegetables with soap or bleach before consuming them, avoid self-medication, and go to a health facility in case of doubt.

Saudi Arabia: MERS

Since March 12, the National IHR Focal Point of Saudi Arabia reported 4 additional cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection, including one associated death. The cases were reported from 3 regions including Riyadh (2 cases), Hafar Albatin (1 case), and Taif (1 case). One death was also reported from a previously reported case. Since 2012, Saudi Arabia has reported 2,178 confirmed MERS-CoV cases with 810 deaths.

Between Sept. 2012 and July 2021, a total of 2,578 laboratory-confirmed cases of MERS-CoV and 888 associated deaths were reported globally to WHO under the International Health Regulations (IHR 2005). The majority of these cases have occurred in the Arabian Peninsula, with one large outbreak outside this region in the Republic of Korea, in May 2015, when 186 laboratory-confirmed cases (185 in the Republic of Korea and 1 in China) and 38 deaths were reported. The total number of deaths includes the deaths that WHO is aware of to date through follow-up with the affected Member States.

United States: Plague

The New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) reports a resident of Torrance County has been diagnosed with bubonic plague, making it the state's 1st human case in 2021. The patient is being treated in a local hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, according to a news release.

Officials say the person was most likely exposed to flea bites brought home by a pet. The release also states that an "environmental investigation will take place at the person's home to look for ongoing risk to immediate family members, neighbors and others in the surrounding community."

Plague is a bacterial disease of wildlife and is usually transmitted to humans and pets through the bites of infected fleas. According to NMDOH, one way for humans to become infected with plague is by sharing a bed with pets that may be carrying infected fleas.

Bulgaria: African Swine Fever

African swine fever (ASF) jumped from the village of Apriltsi in Pazardzhik to a family farm in a neighboring village, the Bulgarian Food Safety Agency (BFSA) announced.

The outbreak of ASF was detected in a pig farm with 40 animals in the village of Sbor, Pazardzhik region. The settlement is located in the 3-kilometer protection zone around the first announced outbreak in the village of Apriltsi. The positive result of the tests was confirmed by the National Reference Laboratory at the National Diagnostic Research Veterinary Medical Institute in Sofia.

Measures have been taken to control and eradicate the disease in accordance with the rules of European and national legislations and the Emergency Action Plan for ASF Control. Humane killing and disposal of all infected and contact pigs in the affected site are forthcoming in compliance with regulatory requirements.

Cote d’Ivoire: Ebola

Disease trackers have yet to identify how a teenager from rural Guinea, treated for Ebola in a hospital in Abidjan, sparked Cote d'Ivoire's first outbreak of the deadly viral disease in 27 years.

The World Health Organization has sent expert teams to both West African nations to help authorities scale up measures to find and prevent additional cases, the agency's regional office in Brazzaville said in a statement on Aug. 19. As of Aug. 18, there was one confirmed and 3 suspected cases in Cote d'Ivoire that later tested negative, WHO said. The 6 high-risk contacts have been quarantined and 131 contacts identified. No deaths have been reported.

The 18-year-old patient traveled from the Labe region in Guinea, near the border with Senegal, to Abidjan, on public transport. She stopped multiple times during her 5-day trip, including through Nzerekore, Guinea's second-largest city, where an Ebola outbreak was declared over 2 months ago. 

The teen developed a fever after leaving her home in rural Guinea. Her symptoms worsened to include headache and bleeding from her gums by the time she arrived in Abidjan, a city of almost 5 million people, on Aug. 12, the WHO said in a report.

Cote d’Ivoire: Avian Influenza

Cote d'Ivoire has put several measures in place to curb a bird flu outbreak near the economic capital Abidjan.

Lab tests confirmed the presence of the H5N1 type following the death of many chickens in traditional and modern farms in the town of Grand Bassam in recent weeks, Livestock and Fisheries Minister Sidi Toure said in a statement Aug. 18.

The measures include strengthening the control of the movement of poultry, its products and by-products, and emergency sanitary slaughtering of all poultry present in the outbreak area, among others.

It's the first outbreak of bird flu in the West African nation since 2015 when at least 12,000 chickens had to be slaughtered to stop the spread.

Philippines: African Swine Fever

Another town in Ilocos Norte has been added to the red zone map of African swine fever (ASF) after 2 barangays in Banna town were found to have been infected with the highly contagious viral disease.

Municipal agriculturist Alan Palaspas confirmed this in a radio interview on Aug. 19 as he reported there are 220 hogs in Barangay Crispina and 424 in Barangay Valdez that needed to be culled to arrest the further spread of ASF to nearby villages and towns.

The municipal agriculturist theorized the water from the irrigation canal where some backyard hog raisers get their water supply may have triggered the spread of the virus or infected meat may have probably entered the municipality amidst stern warning from the local government prohibiting the entry of pig products from other towns and provinces.

Of the 21 towns and 2 cities of Ilocos Norte, at least 7 municipalities, mostly located near upstream are already in the red map or infected zones.

China: Plague

The Health Commission of Ningxia has reported a confirmed bubonic plague case in capital Yinchuan, imported from North China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. The patient, a 55-year-old individual from Ordos, Inner Mongolia, is in critical condition at the General Hospital of Ningxia Medical University in Yinchuan.

Related areas and organizations have initiated emergency protocols in accordance with laws and regulations and conducted strict classification and prevention and control measures on related areas and personnel. The Ningxia regional government initiated the level IV emergency response on plague prevention and control, demanding all efforts in rescuing the patient and the implementation of comprehensive prevention and control measures so that the plague will not spread.

Belgium: Schmallenberg Virus

Animal Health Care Flanders has linked more abortions in cattle to an infection with the Schmallenberg virus [SBV] during the first half of 2021. That is what the organization says in its 'Veescoop herkauwers' ['Veescoop ruminants'] periodical that the organization recently published.

In addition to pathological examinations and the obligatory brucellosis examinations, various other tests are carried out on fetuses and afterbirths that DGZ Vlaanderen receives within the framework of the abortion protocol, in order to determine the cause of the abortion.

Compared to the same period in 2020, significantly more PCR-positive cases for Schmallenberg virus were found in the abortion cases submitted in the spring of 2021. The share of positive tests was 21% in 2021 compared to 16% in 2020, of the total number of abortions examined for the Schmallenberg virus.

United States: Anthrax

Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) officials received confirmation of anthrax in a horse on Armstrong County premises on 20 Aug 2021. This is the 3rd confirmed case of anthrax in Texas this year.

The premises is located in the southern portion of the county and has been quarantined. TAHC rules require proper disposal of affected carcasses and vaccination of other livestock on the premises prior to the release of the quarantine.

"The TAHC will continue to closely monitor the situation and encourage producers in the county to consult with their local veterinary practitioner if they have questions or concerns about anthrax," said Dr. Andy Schwartz, TAHC State Veterinarian, and Executive Director.

Anthrax is a bacterial disease caused by Bacillus anthracis, which is a naturally occurring organism with worldwide distribution, including certain parts of Texas. Cases in Texas are most often found in portions of Crockett, Val Verde, Sutton, Edwards, Kinney, and Maverick counties.

"This is not the first time we have seen anthrax in Armstrong County," said Dr. Schwartz. "Last September, we received confirmation of the disease in a bull on another premises, which serves as a great reminder for producers in the area to vaccinate their animals with the proven and dependable anthrax vaccine."

Congo: Plague

UNICEF has published a piece in UN News concerning plague in Ituri Province, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and the risks for young children. Izzy Scott Moncrieff, UNICEF Social Sciences Analytics Cell (CASS) Field Supervisor, was quoted as saying, "The really worrying thing here is that we've got plague reported in areas which had not seen a case for more than 15 years, and many more cases in areas where they had very few or none previously."

According to WHO, 117 suspected plague cases including 13 deaths were reported in 8 health zones in Ituri Province this year. In 2020, 461 suspected plague cases including 31 deaths were reported in 8 health zones of Ituri. The health zones of Biringi, Rethy, and Aru reported the most cases. This includes bubonic and pneumonic plague cases.

Poor sanitation, poverty, conflict, and displacement contribute to the resurgence of plague in the area and the increased risk for children, and UNICEF notes outbreaks are often blamed on poor sanitation and hygiene practices which attract rats carrying fleas, searching for food, who infect people in their homes.

India: Foot and Mouth Disease

The foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) outbreak in Hazaratbal and its adjoining areas on city outskirts continue to inflict losses on farmers in absence of vaccination.

A farmer said that within last week he lost 2 cattle to the disease while that last remaining ox is infected.

"It is incurring a huge loss on us, which is both financial and emotional. In the past few days, we lost a cow and a calf from the disease. In addition to the financial loss in thousands, this is an emotional trauma while seeing helpless animals dying of the disease," the farmer said.

Some farmers living in Khimber and adjoining areas said that over the past month, the livestock continues to fall to the disease. They said authorities should step up the measures to tackle the issue.

For more than a month there has been a major outbreak around various districts in Kashmir. Central Kashmir's Budgam and south Kashmir's Pulwama have reported a high number of cases. As per the data, through July, around 18,000 cattle were reported to have been infected by FMD in Kashmir.

Nodal officer for FMD in Kashmir, Dr. Anil Gupta, said that they are keeping an eye on the disease that has been unfolding. He said a host of measures have been taken to counter the disease, which has shown positive results.

August 20, 2021

Spain: Tularemia

Four friends who had fished or handled crabs trapped in the River Jalon, in the vicinity of Cetina have suffered an outbreak of bacterial infection, suspected to be ulceroglandular tularemia. Tularemia is a zoonotic infection caused by a Gram-negative intracellular coccobacillus, Francisella tularensis, a highly virulent, highly transmissible, and widely distributed agent, reported the Aragon Weekly Epidemiological Bulletin.

The 4 infected presented fever, general malaise, and respiratory symptoms in some cases and ulcerative lesions with suppuration in the hands and axillary lymphadenopathy that began 3-5 days after exposure to the crabs, although none have required hospitalization and are progressing well with antimicrobial treatment. The health services took samples of the exudates and serology for analysis at the National Center for Microbiology.

The clinical manifestations and severity of this infection, of which person-to-person transmission has not been documented in Europe, vary depending on the route of transmission and, even with treatment, it can reach a fatality rate of 2%. Many reservoirs, vectors, and environmental conditions are involved in the transmission of tularemia, and in Europe, it has its highest incidence in some Scandinavian countries.

India: Anthrax

A patrolling team of the forest department identified the carcass of a female baby elephant with multiple injuries on Aug. 10. The department had initiated an investigation into the deaths of 2 animals whose carcasses were found at different spots in Tamil Nadu's Mudumalai Tiger Reserve. The probe revealed that electrocution in a wire fence caused the death of the male sloth bear while anthrax is suspected to have caused the death of the sub-adult female elephant.

Anthrax is a serious infectious disease caused by Gram-positive, rod-shaped bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax can be found naturally in soil and commonly affects domestic and wild animals around the world. The carcass of the elephant would be disposed of in line with the protocols. Notably, pictures of the elephant's body showed bloodstains on the ground near the trunk and the mouth of the elephant.

Iraq: Anthrax

Residents in Dohuk governorate reported on Aug. 12 that some villagers were infected with anthrax north of Dohuk, while the governorate's health department announced that it had taken the "necessary" measures to control the disease. People who live in the Brifka area in the Amadiyah district, north of Dohuk, told IQ News that "4 people who handled animals were infected with anthrax and were taken to hospital."

For its part, the Dohuk Health Department said, in a statement received by IQ News, that the city's health and veterinary directorates began "taking the necessary preventive measures to control anthrax after suspicions of infections," stressing "the ease of treating those infected with it."

Anthrax mostly threatens livestock and game. Humans become infected through direct or indirect contact with infected animals. There is no evidence, according to medical research, that anthrax can be transmitted from one person to another, but anthrax skin lesions may be contagious through direct contact or contact with an infected object (the infection tool). Usually, anthrax bacteria enter the body through a wound in the skin. The infection can also be acquired by eating infected meat or inhaling the spores.

Canada: Legionellosis

Public Health is reporting one new case of Legionnaires' disease in the Moncton region as part of an outbreak declared Aug. 6. The latest case brings the total number of people ill with the severe form of pneumonia to 7. Bruce Macfarlane, a spokesperson for the Health Department, told CBC News that the latest case was a person who did not live in Moncton.

Macfarlane said officials are testing cooling towers in the western part of the city. Macfarlane said in an email that testing continued at 11 sites.

Dr. Yves Leger, the regional medical officer of health, told CBC that the first case was reported on July 27. Of the 6 initial cases, 5 lived in the Moncton region while the other had visited the region within 14 days of developing symptoms of the illness. Leger said all 6 of the initial cases led to those people being hospitalized, some in intensive care. Macfarlane said the latest person is not severely ill and is not in the hospital.

Namibia: Foot and Mouth Disease

Namibia has detected a new strain of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) virus, [serotype] O, in its northeast Zambezi region.

According to Agriculture Ministry Chief Veterinary Officer Albertina Shikongo, the new strain is more contagious, adding that despite the high vaccination coverage at about 90%, new cases of the disease continue to be observed in vaccinated herds.

"This is the first time in history that the FMD virus [serotype] O is being identified [in Namibia]. The high infection rate caused by the new FMD [serotype] O explains the poor response to the vaccination to this outbreak," she said.

Shikongo said further investigations to establish the source of the new strain are ongoing. However, she added that "it is suspected the strain is a result of illegal cross-border movement of cattle between Namibia's Zambezi region and Zambia."

Spain: Bluetongue

The Teramo zoo-prophylactic institute has confirmed the existence of a clinical outbreak of bluetongue (BT) serotype 4 in the Bari Sardo farms. Sanctioning a dramatic reality: Ogliastra and Nuorese have officially entered an emergency. In recent days, in the Ogliastra area, where the first symptoms of the disease, carried by an insect -- the culicoid -- which affects sheep and other ruminants appeared at the beginning of August, 17 outbreaks were recorded with 3,646 animals involved. Of these, 127 show symptoms of the disease with fever, mastitis, and decreased milk production, while 6 sheep died. 

Now with the virus that has crossed the Ogliastra borders reaching as far as Mandrolisai, it is hoped that the few vaccinations performed by the veterinary services of the Assl di Nuoro and Lanusei are in a state to counteract the spread of the virus.

What caused the disease to explode after 4 years of absence is currently difficult to establish. BT serotype 4, isolated in animal samples first by the Zooprophylactic Institute of Sassari and then confirmed by the Teramo center, may have remained on the island in latent form or may have made its reappearance in Sardinia transported by the African rains of last month.’’

Taiwan: Hantavirus

The Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has reported a new hantavirus case in a male in his 40s with no travel history.

The case was bitten by a rat and returned home after seeking medical treatment on the same day. One day later, he saw a doctor again and was admitted to the hospital with a fever.

The diagnosis of hantavirus was confirmed. The case has since been discharged from the hospital.

According to statistics from the Department of Disease Control, there have been 8 cases of hantavirus syndrome in Taiwan -- 4 cases in Kaohsiung City and 1 case each in Taipei City, New Taipei City, Taichung City, and Changhua County -- which is higher than the same period from 2017 to 2020 (0, 1, 1, and 7 cases, respectively).

France: Leptospirosis

Following the discovery of a case of leptospirosis in a person who descended the Argensou canyon in Ariege, analysis results are awaited. But the order was expected to be issued by the mayor of Auzat to prohibit access to the site.

The Haute-Montagne gendarmerie platoon (PGHM) of Ariege is warning canyoning enthusiasts. Indeed, a person who has crossed this canyon contracted leptospirosis, a bacterial disease most frequently transmitted by the urine of rodents, in particular rats. In humans, the disease is often mild but can lead to kidney failure. It is fatal in 5 to 20% of cases.

Another 2 people who have been in the canyon are currently awaiting the results of their analysis.

Guinea: Marburg Virus Disease

The World Health Organization (WHO)-Liberia Country Office has notified the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL) of 2 confirmed cases of Marburg hemorrhagic fever in Gueckedou, the Republic of Guinea. The patients are a 46-year-old male and a female (age unknown) who were both residents of Temessadou, a sub-prefecture of Gueckedou. The Guinean Health Authorities were alerted by community members of Koundou Lengo Bengou, which is 54 km away from Gueckedou. This is the first time Marburg, a highly infectious disease that causes hemorrhagic fever, has been identified in the country, and West Africa.

Gueckedou, where Marburg has been confirmed, is also the same region where cases of the 2021 Ebola outbreak in Guinea as well as the 2014-2016 West Africa outbreak were initially detected.

Marburg, which is in the same family as the virus that causes Ebola, was detected less than 2 months after Guinea declared an end to an Ebola outbreak that erupted earlier this year.

August 13, 2021

United States: Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease

The Georgia Department of Agriculture's (GDA) Animal Industry Division confirmed rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus 2 (RHDV2) in domestic rabbits at a single Gwinnett County premises. This is the second confirmed case this year. The investigation is ongoing to determine the source of the virus and currently, it does not appear to be linked to the Cobb County case. The premises will remain under quarantine pending additional investigation and development of a site-specific response plan.

GDA has approved the importation of the RHDV vaccine by Georgia licensed veterinarians for administration to domestic rabbits living in Georgia. Once the vaccine is available in Georgia, GDA will post contact information for veterinary practices that will be administering a vaccine.

On June 22, the GDA's Animal Industry Division confirmed rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus 2 (RHDV2) in domestic rabbits at a single Cobb County premise. The investigation is ongoing to determine the source of the virus and there are currently no other confirmed or suspect cases in Georgia. The remaining rabbits in the herd are completing a 90-day quarantine in an isolation facility. The affected premises are undergoing cleaning and disinfection before they will remain fallow for a minimum of 30 days.

Canada: Legionellosis

An outbreak of legionnaires' disease is responsible for the deaths of 2 people in east-end Montreal, according to public health officials. At a news conference on Aug. 4, officials said they have identified 10 cases of the disease since mid-June, including the deaths of 2 people over the age of 65.

Legionnaires' disease is a respiratory infection often associated with pneumonia. It is contracted by breathing in airborne water droplets that are infected with legionella bacteria.

Dr. David Kaiser, with Montreal Public Health, says his team hasn't identified a shared source of the infections, though they are investigating several possibilities, including water-cooling towers, aqueducts, splash pads, and water heaters. Kaiser said residents should ensure water heaters are set to temperatures above 140 degrees to kill bacteria.

Nigeria: Cholera

At least 30 people have been confirmed dead and many others hospitalized from cholera in Zamfara State. Multiple sources at the state Ministry of Health told Premium Times that the state and its health agencies have been battling to contain the outbreak. An official of the ministry said those affected have reached 2,600 with Bakura, Bungudu, Tsafe, Gusau, Zurmi, Kaura Namoda, and Birnin Magaji local government areas of the state worst hit.

A project coordinator assistant for Médecins Sans Frontières in the state also confirmed the outbreak. "MSF Spain is already on the ground. We have opened a CTU [cholera treatment unit] at General Hospital Zurmi. All cholera cases have been asked to be referred to the centers," the source said, asking not to be named for lack of authority to talk to journalists. "Our major headache in this issue is Bakura local government area because the area is not covered by MSF."

With the outbreak, Zamfara State has joined neighboring Sokoto where 23 people were confirmed dead following an outbreak of the disease.

United States: Anthrax

North Dakota agriculture officials are warning producers to monitor their livestock after the first case of anthrax was confirmed earlier this week. The disease was reported in cattle in a Kidder County beef herd. Officials say producers in the county and surrounding areas should check with their veterinarians to see if they should start vaccinating their cattle for anthrax.

Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) officials received confirmation of anthrax in a cow on a Hardeman County premises on Aug. 6. This is the second Texas county, following Val Verde County in July, to have confirmation this year. 

Anthrax is a bacterial disease caused by Bacillus anthracis, which is a naturally occurring organism with worldwide distribution.

Dominican Republic: African Swine Fever

The Dominican Republic's Official Commission for the Control and Eradication of Outbreaks of African Swine Fever declares they are in permanent session to strengthen the measures implemented in the country and optimize inter-institutional coordination with the field teams who have the tasks of identifying, controlling, and eradicating ASF. The teams under the command of the regional directors of the Ministry of Agriculture and the General Directorate of Livestock continue with the planned protocol for the elimination of the outbreaks, according to a recent release from the Dominican Republic's Ministry of Agriculture.

On Aug. 1, backyard pig farms located in Cevicos, Fantino, Villa la Mata, Quita Sueno, and the main municipality of Sanchez Ramirez were intervened to eradicate the disease that affects the pig population. Some 14,135 pigs raised in the backyard were identified in these locations.

Five work teams made up of a veterinarian from the Directorate of Animal Health of the DIGEGA of the Ministry of Agriculture, an expert from the Agricultural Bank, assistants, workers, and members of the national security went to the different farms to proceed with the slaughter of the pigs, which is the only sanitary measure to eradicate the disease according to the protocol established for the control and eradication of African swine fever.

Pakistan: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

A resident of Gawalmandi Chowk area of Quetta was brought to Fatima Jinnah Chest and General Hospital on suspicion of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, commonly referred to as Congo fever, Dunya News reported.

The blood samples of the affected person were sent to the laboratory for testing and found positive for the disease. It is pertinent to mention here that 6 persons were brought to the hospital on suspicion of Congo virus, out of which 4 were found positive for the disease.

Congo fever is a tick-borne viral disease that is mainly transferred to humans from pets. The symptoms of the viral disease may include fever, muscle pains, headache, vomiting, diarrhea, and bleeding into the skin. Complications may also include liver failure.

Guinea: Marburg Virus Disease

On Aug. 6, the Ministry of Health of Guinea informed WHO of a confirmed case of Marburg virus disease (MVD) in Guéckédou prefecture, Nzérékoré region, southwestern Guinea. The village where the case resided is near both Sierra Leone and Liberian borders. This is the first known case of Marburg virus disease in Guinea and West Africa.

The case, a male, had onset of symptoms on July 25. He attended a small health facility near his village of residence with symptoms of fever, headache, fatigue, abdominal pain, and gingival hemorrhage. A rapid diagnostic test for malaria was performed which was negative. The patient received supportive care with rehydration, parenteral antibiotics, and treatment to manage symptoms.

On Aug. 2, he died in the community and an alert was raised by the sub-prefecture public health care facility to the prefectorial department of health in Gueckedou. Following the alert, an investigation team composed of national authorities and WHO experts were deployed to conduct an in-depth investigation. A real-time PCR was conducted that confirmed the sample was positive for Marburg virus disease and negative for Ebola virus disease. 

Brazil: Yellow Fever

This week, the Health Surveillance of Camaqua issued an alert for yellow fever in the interior of the municipality. Of the four dead howler monkeys that were found, one underwent testing to identify the presence of the disease, transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. 

According to the coordinator of Surveillance, Fabiano Martins, two dead howler monkeys were found in Santa Auta, one in Vila Aurora and the other in Banhado no Colegio. The latter had died more recently and, therefore, it was possible to collect material for analysis.

Last week, the Municipal and State Health Surveillance teams carried out orientation and awareness visits about yellow fever in the interior of the municipality. There were 145 properties visited and the results have already started to appear. "We remember that the disease is transmitted by a mosquito, the howler monkey is our sentinel, it gets sick first and shows us that the virus is present."

Yellow fever is an acute, vaccine-preventable viral disease transmitted to humans and non-human primates through the bite of infected mosquitoes.

South Korea: African Swine Fever

South Korea's agriculture ministry said on Aug. 8 that it has confirmed a case of African swine fever (ASF), the first one of the highly contagious and deadly animal diseases in about 3 months. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, pigs at a farm in Gangwon Province were infected with the deadly animal disease, prompting the authorities to cull animals there.

The country also issued a special 48-hour travel ban on livestock-related facilities in Gangwon Province and Gyeonggi Province. Prime minister Kim Boo-kyum called on health authorities to make utmost efforts to swiftly contain the spread of the disease.

In 2019, ASF swept through pig farms in northern regions covering Gyeonggi and Gangwon provinces, prompting authorities to cull about 400,000 pigs nationwide as part of preventive measures. A total of 14 farms were infected.

Although no new ASF cases had been reported from local farms for the past 3 months, the virus had prevailed among wild boar, which can potentially infect domestic pigs through contact.

China: Anthrax

Beijing on Aug. 9 reported an anthrax pneumonia patient, who comes from Chengde in North China's Hebei Province and had a contact history with cattle and sheep and products that come from those animals. The patient was transported to Beijing via an ambulance 4 days after showing symptoms and was later quarantined and put under treatment.

Anthrax is prevalent among cattle and sheep. Human beings usually get infected after coming in contact with sick animals or contaminated products. The commonest route of infection, accounting for 95% of reported cases, is skin contact, which can cause blisters and skin necrosis, Beijing CDC said. 

Russia: Anthrax

In Dagestan, the second case of transmission of anthrax to a person in the past 10 months was reported by the regional department of the Ministry of Health. This time, the disease was confirmed in a 52-year-old resident of the village of Kakashura, the ministry said in a statement. The resident was hospitalized in an infectious diseases hospital. Doctors confirmed that he had a skin form of this disease which is easier to tolerate than the pulmonary and gastrointestinal forms. Currently, the condition of the patient is assessed as moderate.

The department noted that the hospitalized man was engaged in butchering cattle after slaughter. Doctors are now monitoring the well-being of those who have been in contact with the patient.

After the incident with the transmission of the disease to humans was confirmed, an interdepartmental commission was created in the region to investigate the causes and source of infection, as well as to find out the circle of people who else could have been exposed and become infected.

Algeria: Bluetongue

According to a report of the State Veterinary Inspectorate, 7 foci of bluetongue disease were discovered in cow herds in agricultural enterprises in Tissemsilt on Aug. 8. They included 10 cows kept on private agricultural enterprises located in the areas of Bani Mayda, Ain al-Enab, and Boumnouche in the municipality of Tissemsilt, and in the areas of Khanq al-Nahar, Mughila (Al-Ayoun), and Ain Tahtarit (Khemisti) in the city of Khemisti. The cattle were examined by veterinarians affiliated with the aforementioned inspectorate.

Based on the inspection report, preventive measures have been undertaken, including spraying the animals with insect repellents. This was accompanied by the launching of a wide awareness campaign at the level of agricultural enterprises, urging breeders to apply periodic disinfection and cleaning of stables, as well as spraying with insecticides. Public and private veterinarians have been alerted.

Cambodia: Lumpy Skin Disease

Lumpy skin disease (LSD) is now rampant in Tboung Khmum with hundreds of cattle suffering from it in the province. Ken Chansocheat, a provincial veterinary department deputy director, said that as of now at least 600 cows have been infected with the disease, mostly in Krouch Chhmar and Tboung Khmum districts especially along the Mekong River.

He said that LSD is transmitted by mosquitoes and other insects and there is no cure. Only antibiotics are given to help the cattle fight infection while treatment is continued according to the stage of the disease. Chansocheat said LSD had entered Thailand and continues to spread throughout Cambodia. So far, Tboung Khmum is the 18th province that has been hit, causing great concern to people who raise cattle. He added that the provincial veterinary officers are now vaccinating sick cows in affected districts.

India: Foot and Mouth Disease

At least 13 more cattle heads succumbed to foot and mouth disease [FMD] at Ber Kalan village in Payal subdivision of Ludhiana district in the last 24 hours. The animal husbandry department officials are on their toes as 60 cattle have died of the disease in the village so far. More than 500 animals have been infected with the highly contagious disease since its outbreak last week. Fourteen department teams are treating and vaccinating the animals in nearly a dozen villages in the surrounding area.

Veterinarians have advised the dairy farmers to keep the infected animals in isolation. Animal husbandry deputy director PS Walia said, "Regular vaccination drives are being conducted in the area to stop the disease spread. A large number of animals have recovered after being treated. The cattle which show symptoms like fever, sores, and blisters on feet should be isolated and treatment should be started by a certified veterinarian. The symptoms should not be ignored."

United States: Plague

After a dog tested positive for plague following a probable exposure near the Divide Trail Loop at Hayden Divide Park in Colorado, Public Health is urging residents to take precautions to prevent exposure to the plague. While plague is common in the summer months, taking simple precautions can lower the risk of transmission to pets and humans.

Plague is caused by the bacteria Yersinia pestis, which can be spread to people and pets by the bites of infected fleas or by direct contact with infected animals. People or pets with direct exposure to fleas or wildlife in the affected areas may be at risk. People who think they have been exposed should contact a health care provider immediately. Symptoms may include sudden fever, headache, chills, weakness, and tender, painful lymph nodes. If caught early, plague is treatable with antibiotics in both people and pets.

Russia: Norovirus

Russian media reports that 87 children were hospitalized in the Krasnodar Territory hospitals, who became ill on the Murmansk-Adler train. The report said that as of Aug. 8, there are 67 minors in Tuapse CRH no. 1 with intestinal infection, in Apsheronskaya 12, in Belorechenskaya 8. Doctors assess the condition of children as mild and moderate. An employee of the restaurant car, where the children ate before the illnesses, was suspended from work.

Noroviruses, together with rotaviruses, are the main cause of intestinal infections in children. Noroviruses are very contagious, so the entry of this virus into the children's collective very often leads to the rapid spread of intestinal infection among children.

The first symptoms of the disease appear 24-48 hours after infection. It can be a single, but more often multiple vomiting, diarrhea, severe nausea, fever. Norovirus most commonly causes diarrhea and severe vomiting, but sometimes only vomiting can occur. Digestive system disorders can be accompanied by muscle aches, headaches, and weakness.

August 6, 2021

Iraq: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

On July 24, the Veterinary Hospital in Diyala announced its rejection of the preventive ban on marketing livestock and sheep from Al-Khalis district, which was imposed after the first death from Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, was recorded in the governorate.

The director of the veterinary hospital in Diyala, Riyad Al-Tai, said: "the preventive curfew imposed on Al-Khalis district and its villages, which lasted for 3 continuous weeks, after the first death of a woman with hemorrhagic fever was recorded, was lifted at present, as no other case was recorded until now."

He added, "The veterinary teams sprayed sterilization materials twice in the deceased's house and the rest of the neighboring houses, as well as taking a series of preventive measures around the area with a comprehensive preventive ban on Khalis and its villages to prevent the movement of animals, whether from cattle or sheep outside them, to avoid transmission of infections, especially since the disease is common between man and animal."

Georgia: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

In Tbilisi, a 49-year-old woman died of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. As reported in the infectious diseases hospital on July 21, she was taken in a grave condition from the Akhaltsikhe clinic in Samtskhe-Javakheti.

According to the hospital, the patient received all the necessary treatment in the intensive care unit, but due to the severity of the disease, it was not possible to save her.

According to existing information, the woman went to the local clinic late.

Chile: Hantavirus

A 44-year-old woman resident of Curacautin died after contracting a hantavirus according to confirmation by health authorities in Araucania.

Verification of the case is continuing with interviews with family members and neighbors of the victim, "who appeared to have acquired the infection in rural areas of the community," according to the Regional Health Ministerial Secretariat, Gloria Rodriguez.

"This investigation is still underway so we will issue information later," the official added, emphasizing that, "this case makes us remember all the preventive measures that we must take related to infection by hantaviruses." And thus, Rodriguez reiterated the recommendation to avoid infection, especially those who visit foothill Andean communities such as Curacautin and Lonquimay.

India: Scrub Typhus

New cases of bacterial infection named "scrub typhus" are being reported in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to reports, 4 cases of scrub typhus have been found in Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital Shimla on July 27. The medical superintendent of the hospital, Dr. Janak Raj, said that this infection spreads through the bites of infected chiggers.

Most patients of scrub typhus are found in mountainous areas. It is a bacterial infection that leads to the death of people. Some of its symptoms are similar to chikungunya.

According to health experts, permethrin and benzyl benzoate should be sprayed on clothes and bedding to avoid mites. Along with this, if someone is found to have symptoms of scrub typhus, the person should be admitted to the hospital immediately so that the treatment could be started at the earliest.

This disease occurs mainly in villages and animal contact is said to be the main reason for this bacterial infection. Scrub typhus spreads more in village areas that have a high number of livestock and wild bushes.

Liberia: Lassa Fever

Confirmed cases of Lassa Fever have been reported in Liberia for more than 5 years. Between 2016 and 2020, a total of 168 confirmed cases including 70 deaths were reported (case fatality rate 42.0%) in 7 out of the 15 counties in Liberia. During the same period, the number of cases per year ranged from 14 in 2016 to 52 in 2020.

The first confirmed case in 2021 was reported in January in a 39-year-old male, resident of Phebe Airstrip, Bong County. The case was admitted at Phebe Hospital, where a specimen was collected and sent to the National Public Health Reference Laboratory (NPHRL) on the same day. The case died and a safe burial was conducted. Laboratory result confirmed him positive for Lassa virus. From this case, 21 contacts including 18 health workers were identified, line-listed, and followed up.

The second confirmed case was a 38-year-old female resident of MIE Field, who presented with red eyes, general body weakness, poor appetite, sore throat, vomiting, and coughing on March 1 and was unresponsive to treatment. Based on the suspicion for Lassa fever, the case-patient was admitted and isolated at Liberia Agricultural Company hospital in Grand Bassa County. A specimen was collected and tested positive following her death on March 7.

The recent confirmed case was reported on July 5 from Nimba County in a 27-year-old female. She sought medical treatment at Ganta United Methodist Hospital, where she was isolated with complaints of high fever, stomach pains, red eyes, joint pains, nausea, and vomiting. The case died on July 9 and a safe and dignified burial was conducted by the district health team. Laboratory results were positive. A total of 11 contacts, all healthcare workers, were listed. The case had no epi-link to the other confirmed cases neither a travel history to the affected county nor attended funeral service of a confirmed Lassa fever case. A total of 60 contacts from Bong and Nimba Counties are currently under follow-up.

Switzerland: Tick-borne Encephalitis

A 16-year-old Holsteiner gelding in Switzerland affected by neurological problems was diagnosed with tick-borne encephalitis. He made a good recovery, researchers report.

The case report, published in the journal Viruses, is the first to describe the diagnostic criteria in a horse as recommended in humans with suspected tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) infection.

Tick-borne encephalitis is capable of causing neurological signs in humans and animals. Studies on its occurrence in horses include reports of non-specific and neurological signs. However, postmortem confirmation of infection in a horse with obvious neurological signs has been performed in only one early published case study.

Nathalie Fouche and her fellow researchers noted that the seroprevalence of the virus in the equine population in Switzerland has not been investigated to date. In other European countries, its seroprevalence in equines -- indicating previous exposure to the virus -- ranged from 2.9 to 37.5%.

India: Gastroenteritis

A 28-year-old woman has died while over a hundred others have fallen ill in mysterious diarrhea and vomiting outbreak that has hit many areas of sub-division Banihal in J&K's Ramban district with locals blaming the "untreated" tap water for the outbreak. Authorities in the Jal Shakti Department, however, claim that the water was "found fine and fit for drinking", even as more samples are being tested.

In-charge block medical officer Banihal, Dr. Shabir Ahmad Dar, told Greater Kashmir that the 28-year-old, a resident of Halimidan, Banihal, was shifted from a hospital Banihal to Anantnag 2 days ago after suffering vomiting and diarrhea. She had to be shifted to SKIMS Srinagar, where she died after extreme dehydration, the official said.

Officials told Greater Kashmir that at least 132 infected patients have had similar illnesses since the last few days while a dozen are still undergoing treatment at Banihal hospital and a child at GB Panth Hospital Srinagar. As per Dr. Shabir, several medical teams and medicines have been sent to the affected areas from Banihal hospital and so far 132 patients have been treated. He further informed that 56 patients from Lambar, 31 from Kaskoot, 18 from Zinhal, 18 from Ashar, 7 from Karawa, and 5 from Banihal town have been treated while about a dozen people are undergoing treatment.

India: Japanese Encephalitis

The Assam Medical College and Hospital (AMCH) has logged a total of 10 deaths due to Japanese encephalitis since January.

AMCH superintendent Prasanta Dihingia said: "Since January this year, we had 108 acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) and 44 JE cases. In the medicine department, 81 AES cases and 26 JE cases were admitted since January this year while 71 AES cases and 18 JE cases were admitted at the pediatric department of AMCH since April this year. 4 patients died of JE at the pediatric department while 6 succumbed to JE at medicine department of AMCH."

Dihingia added, "Most of the cases were from Lakhimpur and Dhemaji districts. Many patients are still undergoing treatment at the AMCH and our team of doctors is giving them the best treatment." Dihingia further said, "There has been a considerable decline in the number of AES and JE cases in the last 2 years."

Saudi Arabia: Rift Valley Fever

The Saudi authorities on Aug. 2 returned a ship loaded with more than 7,000 head of sheep to Sudan.

Sudanese livestock exports to Arab countries face major problems, especially those heading to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia [KSA], which insists on an adequate vaccination rate against Rift Valley fever [RVF]. This has caused the economically stricken country a loss of millions of dollars.

Reliable sources in the Sudanese livestock sector told the "Sudan Tribune" on Monday that "the Saudi authorities returned the 'Mabrouka 10' ship, which was carrying 7,853 head of sheep."

This is the fifth shipment returned by the Saudi authorities since the resumption of exports between the 2 countries in January. The sources indicated that the ship was returned for violation of health requirements and the presence of immune bodies for foot-and-mouth disease [FMD] after samples were taken and sent to the laboratory.

Dominican Republic: African Swine Fever

The Dominican Republic will slaughter tens of thousands of pigs after detecting outbreaks of African swine fever in 11 of the country's 32 provinces, authorities said Aug. 2. Fernando Duran, the administrator of the state-run Banco Agricola, told a news conference the government will pay pig farmers the market price of each animal slaughtered. The announcement of the slaughter comes after authorities sent 389 samples from pig farms across the country to US laboratories after registering the widespread death of animals in 3 provinces in the last month.

Authorities said the only way to stop the disease, which is lethal and for which there is no vaccine, is to kill the entire pig population in farms where it has been detected. Officials are still investigating the origin of the outbreak and have not said how many pigs will be slaughtered.

The government confirmed the presence of the virus in the Montecristi provinces, in the northwest, and Santiago Rodriguez, in the center of the country, where it has imposed quarantines in farms and sanitary cordons. Julio Cesar Estevez, director of the Ministry of Agriculture in the northwest region, told Reuters that brigades equipped with biosecurity suits would handle the slaughter and bury the animals in pits to try to contain the spread of the illness. Estevez said brigade members would also confiscate pigs raised privately for personal consumption. He estimated that if operations to kill the pig population began immediately, the outbreak could be eradicated in about 5 months

Nigeria: Cholera

Nigeria has been hit by a surge in cholera cases in recent weeks, focused on the country's north and adding to a public health crisis accompanied by a rise in COVID-19 cases. "In the last 2 weeks we had new and resurgence cases," Dr. Bashir Lawan Muhammad, the state epidemiologist and deputy director of public health for northern economic hub Kano State told Reuters. He said the rainy season was making it worse, while insecurity in the north, where the authorities have been battling Islamist militants and armed criminals, was also hindering the authorities' ability to respond.

A total of 22 of Nigeria's 36 states, as well as the federal capital territory, Abuja, have suspected cases of cholera, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, (NCDC). The illness, which is caused by contaminated water, can kill within hours if not treated. The surge has been focused in the north of the country, where health systems are least prepared.

At least 186 people had died in Kano of cholera since March 2021, Muhammad said. The state accounts for the biggest share of the 653 cholera deaths recorded in the country as a whole by the NCDC. Nearby northern states Bauchi and Jigawa are also among the hardest hit, according to the NCDC.

Nigeria: Monkeypox

At least 4 cases of monkeypox were confirmed in Nigeria in July 2021, according to a report by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

A 2017 outbreak spread to at least 14 states and sparked nationwide panic, but it became largely forgotten until a man tested positive in the United States after arriving from Nigeria early last month. The NCDC said it was notified of the case and is supporting the relevant state governments in Nigeria to carry out outbreak investigation and response.

A total of 17 monkeypox cases have been confirmed in Delta (6), Lagos (4), Bayelsa (3), Rivers (3), and Edo (1) since the beginning of the year, with no deaths.

This year's haul is already more than double the 8 cases that were confirmed last year. Of the nearly 500 cases reported since the 2017 outbreak, 209 have been confirmed in 18 states, with 8 deaths in 4 years.

Monkeypox response in Nigeria is coordinated by a multi-agency Technical Working Group at NCDC, with offsite support provided to states. Low utilization of health facilities by patients due to stigmatization, cost, and low mortality rate, as well as low sample-collection rate in reporting states, have been identified as significant challenges to the national response.

United States: Eastern Equine Encephalitis

An adult resident of Liberty County, Georgia has died after contracting Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE). The virus is spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. There is no way to verify exactly where the virus was contracted, and everyone is encouraged to take precautions against mosquito bites.

EEE is a mosquito-borne virus that causes swelling of the brain. In horses, it is fatal 70 to 90 percent of the time. Horse and large animal owners are encouraged to vaccinate their animals against the virus and to clean out watering sources, such as buckets and troughs, every 3-4 days to prevent mosquitoes from breeding there.

EEE is rare in humans; however, humans are susceptible to the virus. Previously, there have been 2 cases of EEE in the 8-county Coastal Health District since 2010, with one death in 2018. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most people infected with EEE do not show illness. Symptoms in severe cases of EEE include a sudden onset of headache, high fever, chills, and vomiting. The primary mosquito that transmits EEE breeds in freshwater swamps.

United States: Plague

Officials are closing some areas on the south shore of Lake Tahoe after some chipmunks tested positive for plague. The Tahoe Daily Tribune reports that the Taylor Creek Visitor Center, Kiva Beach, and their parking areas will be off-limits through Aug. 6. During that time, the US Forest Service will be conducting vector control treatments in those areas.

El Dorado County spokeswoman Carla Hass said the chipmunks that were tested had no contact with any people. Forest Service officials expect the facilities to be open again by the weekend. According to El Dorado County Public Health, plague is naturally present in some areas of California.

People hiking and doing other outdoor activities should avoid contact with animals. They should do the same for their pets.

India: Foot and Mouth Disease

An outbreak of the highly infectious foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) has killed 35 milch cattle at Dina Sahib village of Nihal Singh Wala sub-division over the past 4 weeks. The disease is a contagious viral infection. Another 42 animals are critical, with cows bearing the major burden of the disease, officials of the animal husbandry department said.

The affected cattle were among 150,000 animals that the state government had vaccinated under the Centre's National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP) in November 2020. However, the vaccine drive was halted midway after samples of the vaccine failed the quality test.

Villagers claimed that at least 4 animals are dying every day and the death toll has passed 100. They also alleged that the district animal husbandry department did not include the number of dead calves in its total count of dead animals.

The results of samples taken by the department last week confirmed that the deaths were caused by FMD. "The results of samples listed negative for hemorrhagic septicemia, commonly known as 'Gal-Ghotu' but they tested positive for FMD," said an official.

July 29, 2021

United States: Monkeypox

More than 200 people in 27 US states are being tracked for possible rare monkeypox infections, health officials say. They fear people may have come in contact with a Texas man who brought the disease in from Nigeria earlier this month. 

The man -- believed to be the first monkeypox case in the US since 2003 -- was taken to hospital but is in stable condition. So far, no new cases have been found.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says it is concerned passengers who were on board 2 flights the man may have been exposed to the disease. He flew into Atlanta, Georgia from Lagos, Nigeria on July 9, before taking a flight to Dallas, where he was hospitalized, the CDC said.

Thailand: Lumpy Skin Disease

At least 9 banteng, or Bali cattle, in Huai Kha Khaeng wildlife sanctuary in Thailand's Uthai Thani province are thought to be infected with lumpy skin disease (LSD), and a team of veterinarians has been sent to investigate, according to Mr. Sompong Thongseekhem, director of the Office of Wildlife Conservation, Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plants Conservation. Mr. Sompong said that camera traps, installed in the Huay Tap Salao-Huay Rabum no-hunting zone, about 10 km from the sanctuary, have captured images of at least 9 banteng, with multiple nodules on their skin, thought to be symptoms of LSD. Lumpy skin disease is an infectious disease in cattle, caused by a virus of the Poxviridae family. The disease is characterized by fever, enlarged superficial lymph nodes, multiple nodules on the skin and mucous membranes. The infected cattle may also develop edematous swelling in their limbs and exhibit lameness.

Mr. Sompong said that the banteng's feeding ground is shared with domesticated cattle, brought in by cattle farmers, and is possible that the wild species might have contracted the disease from the domesticated cattle. He added, however, that the infected banteng are not in a serious condition yet and medication is on its way with the veterinarians.

China: Avian Influenza

The Center for Health Protection of the Department of Health is closely monitoring 3 new cases of human infection with avian influenza (H5N6) in the Mainland, and once again urged the public to keep good personal, food, and environmental hygiene.

The first case involved a 51-year-old woman living in Xuanhan, Sichuan Province, who had been in contact with live poultry before becoming ill. She was admitted to the hospital for treatment on July 2 and died on July 4. The second case involved a 57-year-old man living in Kaijiang, Sichuan Province, who had been in contact with live poultry before he became ill. He developed symptoms on June 22 and was admitted to the hospital on July 5 in critical condition.

The 3rd case involved a 66-year-old man living in Tongnan, Chongqing, who had been in contact with live poultry before he became ill. He developed symptoms on June 23 and was admitted to the hospital on June 30 in critical condition.

Since 2014, the Mainland health authorities have notified a total of 35 human cases of avian influenza A (H5N6). A spokesperson for the Center for Health Protection said: "All new influenza A, including H5N6, are statutory notifiable infectious diseases in Hong Kong."

Chile: Q Fever

A young 28-year-old veterinarian was transferred in serious condition to Santiago, after arriving at the Osorno Base Hospital from the Puerto Octay Hospital with respiratory distress. The patient tested negative for coronavirus and hantavirus, but she is suspected of having Q fever. Through social networks, the case of the veterinarian, who worked in the Manuka dairy company in Puerto Octay, was made known. The woman's relatives urgently requested blood donors after she was diagnosed as suspected of Q fever. Q fever is an infection caused by the bacteria Coxiella burnetii. It is transmitted from animals to humans and in its deadliest form can damage vital organs.

The director of the Hospital Base San Jose, Hans Hesse, referred to the clinical condition of the patient. This person was transferred by a team specialized in ECMO -- a rare machine in Chile -- and respiratory support for high-severity patients, to the Las Condes clinic. Meanwhile, the Regional Ministerial Secretary of Health, Alejandro Caroca, assured that they are continuing the diagnostic work. The authority added that if the presence of the bacteria is confirmed, they will take the necessary actions.

Ukraine: Tularemia

Health authorities in Volyn Oblast report a tularemia case in a woman from the village of Sadiv in Lutsk district. According to the results of the epidemiological investigation, it was established that the disease was probably caused by a bite of an insect.

The patient had symptoms typical of tularemia: during the day the body temperature rose, and chills appeared. On the 3rd day, there were complaints of redness and swelling of the skin at the site of the insect bite, joint pain, and enlarged cervical and inguinal lymph nodes characteristic of tularemia.

Infectious disease doctors suspected tularemia and performed the necessary selection of material for laboratory testing. Laboratory analysis confirmed tularemia. The patient is in outpatient treatment at the Volyn Regional Infectious Diseases Hospital with a diagnosis of "tularemia, ulcerative-bubonic form, moderate" [ulcero-glandular]. This is the first reported case of tularemia in the area since the beginning of the year.

Brazil: Yellow Fever

The Government of Amapa confirmed July 21 one death from yellow fever in the city of Macapa. The patient was a 21-year-old man who was hospitalized at the Oswaldo Cruz State Emergency Hospital for several days.

The patient was admitted to the hospital with symptoms of abdominal pain and fever for 10 days, jaundice, and a flaccid and painful abdomen. After the suspicion of yellow fever was notified, the Central Laboratory of Amapa (Lacen/AP) performed RT-PCR, which confirmed the case.

"This case was probably acquired in a forest area in the region, as it is a disease that is closely linked to the entry of man into these environments, which is where the main vector is: the mosquito. So, probably the infection occurred in this situation," detailed Dorinaldo Malafaia, Superintendent of Health Surveillance of Amapa (SVS/AP).

Although the death occurred in Macapa, the young man was a resident of Rio Tambaqui do Vieira, in Afua ([Para state]) and worked in a sawmill, but he came to the capital of Amapa in search of medical care.

Nepal: Leishmaniasis

The Epidemiology and Disease Control Division said that infection of kala-azar and dengue have been found in Kalikot [Karnali], Okhaldhunga, and Myagdi [Gandaki] districts, which would not report these diseases in the past.

"We have alerted the health workers at the local level and districts about the risk of a large-scale outbreak of kala-azar and dengue," said Lila Bikram Thapa, a senior public health administrator at the division. "What is alarming is these diseases have been reported from mountain districts, which were considered non-endemic to the diseases."

Kala-azar, also known as visceral leishmaniasis or black fever, is transmitted through the bite of an infected female phlebotomine sandfly.

Detection of kala-azar cases in areas above 650 meters where it was thought impossible for female phlebotomine sand flies to survive is a cause for serious concern, health officials say. "We were taught that phlebotomine sandflies do not survive above the altitude of 650 meters, but now cases of infection are being reported in altitudes over 1400 meters," said Thapa.

Weight loss, weakness, cough, and fever that last from a few weeks to months are common symptoms of kala-azar.

India: Cholera

Now that COVID-19 cases have started showing a downward trend, 3 cholera cases from 3 areas have put the Health Department on its toes. The positive cases include 2 infants. Teams of the Health Department are visiting the 3 areas, doing a house-to-house survey, creating awareness, and distributing ORS packets. The health officials have confirmed the 3 cases. Cholera is an infectious disease that causes severe diarrhea. It can lead to dehydration. It is caused by eating contaminated food or drinking water.

The source of drinking water in the area is an MC tap. A 2-year-old had consumed food from outside a day before symptoms showed up. Five water samples and 3 stool samples have been collected from the area on July 25. The child, who was admitted to the DMCH, was discharged subsequently. In Adarsh Colony, a 21-year-old youth was found suffering from cholera. He resides in a migrants' vehra where 8 families stay. Five water samples and 2 stool samples were collected from the area on Sunday.

Congo: Yellow Fever

On July 18, 2 yellow fever cases in individuals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) tested positive by plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) at Centre Pasteur in Cameroon (CPC), according to a World Health Organization (WHO) report.

The first case is a 34-year-old man from the Abuzi health zone, North Ubangi province, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, whose date of symptom onset was Feb. 20 with fever, vomiting, abdominal pain, back pain, and physical asthenia.

The second case is a 47-year-old female unvaccinated against yellow fever from Ango health zone, Bas Uele province. She first exhibited symptoms on May 7.

In addition, confirmatory results are pending for 3 other presumptive positive cases from Equateur, Kinshasa, and North Ubangi provinces.

Yellow fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic fever that spreads through the bites of infected mosquitoes.

July 26, 2021

Germany: African  Swine Fever

For the first time, African swine fever (ASF) was found in domestic pig populations nationwide. These are holdings in the Brandenburg districts of Spree-Neisse and Märkisch Oderland. The state of Brandenburg announced this in a press release July 15. The 2 animal holdings affected were closed by the responsible veterinary authorities and the necessary measures were initiated. The virus was initially detected by the Berlin-Brandenburg state laboratory. On Thursday evening, the national reference laboratory, the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut (FLI), confirmed the suspicion of ASF.

India: Anthrax

Bhubaneswar's Regional Medical Research Centre has started a study across 14 blocks in Odisha's Koraput for coordinated interventions to check animal-to-human transmission of anthrax. The study is likely to be completed by end of next year. It will test the effectiveness of public health interventions to check the disease transmission in Koraput, the epicentre of anthrax in Odisha. Of the 30 districts of Odisha, 19 are reported as endemic for human anthrax. In all 19 districts, anthrax was diagnosed among livestock. In 4 districts -- Koraput, Rayagada, Malkangiri, and Sundergarh -- human anthrax cases were reported. Among the 3 types of anthrax, the cutaneous form was most common across the state.

United States: Anthrax

Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) officials received confirmation of anthrax in a captive white-tailed deer herd on a Val Verde County premises on July 11. This is the first anthrax case in Texas this year. The premises is located in the south central portion of the county, north of Comstock, and has been quarantined. TAHC rules require proper disposal of affected carcasses on the premises prior to release of the quarantine. 

United States: Monkeypox

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Texas Department of State Health Services confirmed on July 15 a case of human monkeypox in a US resident who recently traveled from Nigeria to the United States. The person is currently hospitalized in Dallas. CDC is working with the airline and state and local health officials to contact airline passengers and others who may have been in contact with the patient during 2 flights: Lagos, Nigeria to Atlanta on July 8, with arrival on July 9, and Atlanta to Dallas on July 9.

Nigeria: Cholera

The Enugu State Ministry of Health has confirmed that there is a cholera outbreak in New Artisan Market, Enugu, which resulted in the death of 7 people, while 19 ill persons are identified with the symptoms of loose stool and vomiting. Confirming the cholera outbreak in the market, the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Emmanuel Ikechukwu Obi, disclosed that the Ministry's rapid response team, upon receiving reports of the incident carried out an immediate investigation.

Australia: Hendra Virus

A novel Hendra virus (HeV) variant was identified through multidisciplinary and interagency syndromic surveillance of a horse having suffered acute fatal disease consistent with HeV infection. Novel molecular assays for HeV detection are described in the light of routine testing failure. In silico analysis of the variant receptor-binding protein in comparison with prototypic HeV supported that the monoclonal antibody m102.4 used for post-exposure prophylaxis, as well as the equine vaccine, should be effective also against this novel variant.

Germany: Legionellosis

In Heilbronn District, in northern Baden-Württemberg, Germany, it is reported that 5 men and women have contracted legionnaires' disease and 2 have died. The patients came from Obersulm, Ellhofen, Weinsberg, and Löwenstein, health officials announced. Most of them are middle-aged and older men. The 2 deceased men had a previous illness and were 49 and 81 years old. Health authorities are feverishly looking for the source of the contamination.

Yemen: Malaria

Thousands of citizens have been infected with malaria since the beginning of this year in areas controlled by the ousted Hadi government in Taiz province, southwest Yemen. Health facilities in the province have recorded 4,000 confirmed and suspected cases of malaria, a media source said, quoting an official in the malaria control program in the province.

July 15, 2021

United States: Plague

Colorado health officials have confirmed that the plague was responsible for the death of a Durango-area child. The 10-year-old girl was a member of a local 4H group, the Weaselskin 4H Club, confirmed one of the club's leaders, Mike Latham.

A statement released July 9 from the Colorado Department of Health and Environment [CDPHE] said the investigation of the case to determine how and when the girl contracted plague is continuing. "We are so sad for the loss of this young Coloradan and our deepest condolences go to the family," said Dr. Jennifer House of CDPHE. "Public health is doing an epidemiological investigation and wants Coloradans to know that while this disease is very rare, it does occur sometimes, and to seek medical care if you have symptoms."

This is the first human plague death in the state in 6 years. While exceedingly rare, when infections and deaths do occur, they disproportionately occur in La Plata County, home to Durango. Residents of La Plata County made up almost half of Colorado's plague cases between 2005-2020, according to CDPHE.

Canada: Anthrax

Saskatchewan Agriculture is reminding producers to be on the lookout for anthrax in their animals after confirmation that anthrax has been found in the RM of South Qu'Appelle no. 157. Anthrax was confirmed by laboratory results on July 7 as the cause of death in one animal in a flock of sheep. It is the suspected cause of death of 4 additional sheep on the same premises.

Anthrax is caused by the bacteria Bacillus anthracis, which can survive in spore form for decades in soil. Changes in soil moisture, from flooding and drying, can lead to a build-up of the spores on pastures. Spores can concentrate in sloughs and potholes, and there is an increased risk of animal exposure to anthrax in drier years when these areas dry up and become accessible. Spores can also surface when the ground is excavated or when there is excessive run-off.

Livestock can become infected when they ingest food contaminated with spores. Ruminants such as bison, cattle, sheep, and goats are highly susceptible, and horses can also be infected. Swine, birds, and carnivores are more resistant to infection, but farm dogs and cats should be kept away from carcasses.

Affected animals are usually found dead without any signs of illness. Anthrax can be prevented by vaccination.

United States: Eastern Equine Encephalitis

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has reported the 8th and 9th eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) cases in horses this year [2021] in the state.

The 8th confirmed case of EEE was reported in a horse from a private facility in Jefferson County. The animal has died.

The 9th confirmed case was reported in a horse from a private facility in Madison County. The horse was euthanized.

Pakistan: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

With Eidul Azha less than 2 weeks away, officials in Balochistan reported 2 Congo virus cases on July 8. The cases were confirmed by Dr. Sadiq Baloch, additional medical superintendent at Quetta's Fatima Jinnah Chest and General Hospital. He said the 2 patients had been placed in an isolation ward.

"Their condition is stable," he said. According to the official, one of the patients was an 11-year-old boy from Chaman, while the other was a 40-year-old man from Loralai.

He said both patients came to the hospital complaining of fever and bleeding from the mouth. Baloch added that during the last one-and-a-half months, 7 Congo virus patients were brought to the facility.

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, or Congo virus, is a viral infection transmitted by ticks to both animals and humans. The virus is transmitted by ticks living on the skin of goats, cows, buffalos, and camels, feeding on their blood. The disease is rare in infected animals, who mostly act as carriers of the disease which they transmit.

India: Rabies

A woman and her son died of suspected rabies in Dimapur district of Nagaland in June, officials said.

Officials of the Nagaland department of animal husbandry and veterinary services said that the deaths of the mother-son duo from Rilan village under Dimapur district in June were due to rabies infection. According to a statement issued by the veterinary surgeon of Dimapur District Veterinary Hospital, the 2 deceased were diagnosed with rabies on June 9. The woman died on June 10, while the son died on June 11.

Accordingly, the deaths were also reported to the chief medical officer of Dimapur. It said that after the deaths, a team from the veterinary hospital visited Rilan village and collected a report from the village council chairman and secretary.

The victims were reportedly bitten by their own dog 20 days before their deaths, and the woman also had an earlier history of a dog bite, the officials said.

India: Japanese Encephalitis

Dibrugarh district has reported a huge decline in vector-borne diseases over the last 3 years after National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP) ramped up measures to control the 6 vector-borne diseases.

The upper Assam district has recorded only a single case of Japanese encephalitis (JE) and 4 cases of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) this year. One person with AES has also succumbed to the disease during the period.

Once considered a hotbed of JE and AES, the Dibrugarh district has shown a considerable decline in the number of cases this year.

There has been a significant drop in JE and AES cases in Dibrugarh compared to the past 2 years. In 2019, Dibrugarh recorded 33 JE cases and 285 AES cases. Additionally, there were 11 JE deaths and 31 AES deaths in 2019. The number of cases came down in 2020, with 13 JE cases and 29 AES cases being reported from the district. There were also 2 JE deaths and 5 AES deaths last year.

Siddhartha Saikia, the district consultant of the Directorate of National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), said, "Due to the sincere efforts of the health department, the cases have come down in Dibrugarh."

India: Anthrax

Multiple news articles reported that Anthrax has claimed the life of a wild elephant in a reserve forest area near Anaikatti in Coimbatore district, the Forest Department said July 12. The blood smear samples collected from the carcass had the presence of Bacillus anthracis, the bacterium that causes anthrax, senior officials said. With the test confirming the death by anthrax, the Forest and Animal Husbandry Departments will take measures to contain the spread of the infection.

The carcass of the female elephant, aged 13-15, was spotted by a patrol team in a forest area of the Anaikatti central beat of the Thudiyalur section of the Coimbatore forest range. A government veterinarian lifted the blood smear samples. Blood oozed from the anus and the mouth in a possible indication of anthrax infection. A. Sukumar, Forest Veterinary Officer, Coimbatore Forest Division, said the carcass would be destroyed by deep burial or cremation, to prevent the spread of the infection.

The Department has asked frontline workers to monitor other elephants which had been roaming with the deceased elephant. I. Anwardeen, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Coimbatore Circle), said the Coimbatore Forest Division would check with Kerala's Forest Department whether any case of anthrax was reported in that State recently because Anaikatti is located between Tamil Nadu and Kerala.

Congo: Plague

Since the beginning of 2021, Ituri province in the northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has reported a total of 117 suspected cases of bubonic and pulmonary plague and 13 deaths (case fatality rate [CFR]: 11.1%) from 8 health zones. In Fataki health zone in the province, where a plague has not been seen in at least 10 years, a total of 37 cases of bubonic and pulmonary plague with 12 deaths (CFR: 32.4%) have been reported.

The plague is endemic to the northeast areas of the DRC, where cases were reported for the first time in 1928. The endemic nature of the disease in this region is linked to more cases in the rainy seasons (from March-May, then July-November), harvest seasons, and its peri-forest environment leading to the presence of peri-domestic rodents that can carry the plague bacillus and rodent fleas that transmit plague.

According to country reports, an average of 114 cases were reported between 2013 and 2020, with an upsurge in cases and geographical extensions increasingly noted since 2019. The most cases reported during these years was in 2020, [when] the total number of cases reached more than 450.

Kazakhstan: Anthrax

Three people contracted anthrax in the Kostanay region. They are now in the hospital. The disease was first detected in cattle in one of the livestock farms in the village of Prirechnoye, Denisovskiy district.

More than 10 heads have already died, and quarantine has been imposed on the area. Veterinarians have hygienically disposed of the corpses of the dead animals. Also, the places where cattle were kept and died were disinfected. Vaccination against anthrax was urgently organized. The vaccinated animals are under the supervision of veterinary officers. The epizootic situation in the rest of the villages of the Denisov region and in the whole of the Kostanay region is stable.

Laos: Lumpy Skin Disease

The Lao government has extended the ban on the import of cattle and other beef products due to an outbreak of lumpy skin disease [LSD], which is continuing to spread in various areas of the country.

According to the local daily Vientiane Times on July 13, measures have been introduced to monitor and control the spread of the disease and address the shortage of beef and buffalo meat so there is enough to meet the needs of consumers.

The Department of Livestock and Fisheries under the Lao Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has issued guidelines to control the transport of cattle until the disease outbreak subsides.

A ban on the transport of cattle between provinces has been instituted to ensure the disease does not spread around the country, with checkpoints to be set up on roads.

The department has instructed the relevant sectors and local authorities to inform the public, farmers, and livestock businesses about the ways to prevent the spread of the disease, including improving hygiene and ensuring a clean environment for livestock.

The department stressed the need for closer coordination between central and local authorities to prevent delays in response to the disease outbreak.

July 8, 2021

Brazil: Rabies

In the last few days, the Centre for Zoonoses Control (CCZ) diagnosed more than 3 bats infected by the rabies virus in Foz do Iguaçu, the western region of Paraná state. The records raised the cases to 19 since January 2021, which is the same number recorded in the whole of 2019, and close to the maximum of 32 infected bats recorded in 2018.

Bats were spotted all over Foz do Iguaçu. According to Giselli Kurtz, coordinator of the Zoonoses Control Program, they were observed in the following neighborhoods: Centro, Jardim Niterói, Profilurb, Cohapar, Vila C, Jardim Eliza, Vila A, Jardim Lindóia, Jardim Santa Rita, Jardim das Laranjeiras, Jardim Soledade, Alto da Boa Vista, Três Lagoas, e Três Bandeiras.

"Unfortunately, if this situation continues, the annual record of rabies cases will be broken", said Giselli. According to her, people should notify the authorities when a bat is found on the ground, or inside a house, no matter whether the animal is dead or alive. Normal bats, flying at night or perched in a refuge during the day, are not to be suspected as rabid.

"The bats that might be rabid are those showing strange behavior (on the ground, flying indoors, hitting walls, dead)". She was also alerted about the risk to humans and domestic animals directly exposed to a rabid bat.

Armenia: Anthrax

Citing the Ministry of Health, a July 1 newspaper article reported that 3 people in Armenia's Gegharkunik region have been confirmed to have contracted anthrax.

It said the anthrax was found in livestock in the communities of Vanevan and Torfavan by the specialists of the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention, who had been dispatched to the region to take samples from 7 residents.

Three of them were diagnosed with anthrax. Two are the owners of the infected animals; another one is their relative. All of them are hospitalized: the condition of 2 is moderate, the third is mild.

The research was also carried out on 4 samples of land from the village of Vanevan and nearby pastures, and no causative agents of this disease were found. The specialists go from home to home to examine all the animals, the ministry said.

Kenya: Leishmaniasis

Experts have expressed concern over the steady rise in the number of reported cases of leishmaniasis in the country.

Data from the Health Ministry show that the number of cases of the disease, also known as kala-azar, rose from 907 in 2018 to 1,463 in 2019, before dropping to 1,200 last year.

The Head of the Division of Vector-borne and Neglected Tropical Diseases at the Ministry, Sultani Matendechero, now says that the disease was believed to be prevalent in just 6 counties and now at least 11 counties are experiencing ongoing transmission of visceral leishmaniasis. They include Marsabit, Mandera, Garissa, Turkana, West Pokot, Baringo, Isiolo, Wajir, Kitui, Nakuru, and Nyandarua. Recent reports indicate that Kajiado and Tharaka Nithi have also reported some cases.

Kenya now plans to reduce the number of cases by at least 60 percent and reduce the incidence by 50 percent in the next 5 years.

Kala-azar is classified as a neglected tropical disease and is caused by infection with Leishmania parasites, which are spread by the bite of phlebotomine sand flies.

Spain: Bluetongue

The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food (MAPA) have published its report on the detection of serotype 4 of the bluetongue virus in the Balearic Islands.

The MAPA points out that the preliminary molecular studies carried out in the Central Veterinary Laboratory (LCV) of Algete on the virus indicate that the strain causing these outbreaks is similar to the one that affected the region in recent years, from the Balkans and Italy.

The report remarks that it is "therefore different from the virus present in the south of the Iberian Peninsula. In addition, in all cases, the affected animals are native to the Balearic Islands, and there have been no recent entries of animals in the farms affected," he adds.

In this way, they consider that the most likely hypothesis is the introduction of the virus utilizing Culicoides midges infected with the virus from other areas of the Mediterranean, as already happened in the previous outbreaks detected during the 1st decade of this century.

Vietnam: Avian Influenza

Vietnam confirmed its first outbreak of H5N8 avian influenza at a chicken farm in the northern province of Quang Ninh.

Samples from the farm in the province's Ha Long City tested positive for the virus a day earlier, the agriculture ministry said in a news release.

It said the tests were conducted after around 200 chickens had been found dead at the farm last month.

"H5N8 not only kills poultry but also infects humans without leaving symptoms," the head of the province's animal health department, Tran Xuan Dong, said.

The authorities had taken measures to prevent the disease from spreading further, it said, without elaborating.

Spain: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

A woman, 68, was admitted to the Hospital Rio Hortega of Valladolid in Northern Spain with a suspected case of Crimean-Congo fever, which is caused by tick bites.

According to health sources, the woman has been isolated since then, and samples have already been sent to the San Carlos Institute in Madrid. If results come back positive for the disease, then this would be the second case in just over 2 months, as on April 26, the general directorate of Public Health and its Epidemiology Service confirmed one other in the province of Salamanca.

According to the regional government, the patient in Salamanca was a 59-year-old man, a farmer who by profession was in constant contact with animals.

The man had presented to the hospital with tick bites, where the appropriate tests were positive for Crimean hemorrhagic fever, or Congo fever, as it is commonly known. This was later confirmed by the San Carlos III Health Institute in Madrid.

Guinea: Lassa fever

The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported the second confirmed Lassa fever case and fatality in the West African country of Guinea.

The first case was notified at the Yomou prefecture hospital, a resident of Yomou prefecture. The patient was also confirmed to be positive for COVID-19 and later died. Contact tracing of 88 people was done, and no secondary cases were found.

On June 17, a second confirmed case was detected at Nzerekore Regional Hospital; this case was from Beyla prefecture and died the same day. A listing of 111 contacts has been done for follow-up.

Other public health actions taken include the strengthening of epidemiological surveillance; sensitization of health workers and community members on the definitions of cases of Lassa fever and other epidemic-prone diseases.

Russia: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

According to data from the regional department of Rospotrebnadzor, 14 patients have been diagnosed with Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) in Stavropol, in southwestern Russia.

"According to the results of laboratory tests, the diagnosis of Crimean hemorrhagic fever was established in 14 patients from among the provisionally hospitalized, living in the Petrovsky and Blagodarnensky urban districts; in Apanasenkovsky, Arzgirsky, Krasnogvardeisky, Ipatovsky, and Shpakovsky districts; and Stavropol," the report says.

Stavropol residents are urged to observe safety measures when outdoors. It is recommended to spray clothes with repellent, and after walking, check your body for ticks. If you find a tick on yourself, contact the emergency room.

CCHF is a widespread disease caused by a tick-borne virus (Nairovirus) of the Bunyaviridae family. The CCHF virus causes severe viral hemorrhagic fever outbreaks, with a case fatality rate of 10-40%.

July 1, 2021

Nigeria: Cholera

Seven people were confirmed killed following an outbreak of cholera in Nigeria's capital Abuja, local health authorities said on June 24. A total of 91 suspected cases have been recorded in Abuja as of June 23.

Mohammed Kawu, acting secretary in charge of the Health and Human Services Secretariat (HHSS) of the Federal Capital Territory, told a press conference in Abuja. Kawu said out of the 91 suspected cases, three have so far tested positive for cholera through the use of rapid diagnostic test kits.

He said from May 2021, the city began to receive reports of sporadic cases of gastroenteritis in some communities in Abuja, and the health secretariat through the department of public health had intensified surveillance in the communities. He also said that the secretariat had provided some rapid diagnostic test kits, drugs, and consumables in some of the health facilities with reported cases.

According to Kawu, community sensitization on preventive measures is ongoing. He enjoined residents to report any case of diarrhea to the nearest health facility or the department of public health.

Cholera is a highly virulent disease characterized in its most severe form by a sudden onset of acute watery diarrhea that can lead to death by severe dehydration. The infection is frequently reported in Nigeria due to the lack of potable water supply, especially in densely populated areas.

India: Japanese Encephalitis

A Lowndes County mosquito pool has tested positive for EEE, or eastern equine encephalitis [virus], according to the South Health District. The South Health District said this is the first positive pool testing notification of 2021. The health district also said that Georgians should take precautions to prevent mosquito-borne illnesses.

"Taking the necessary steps to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites is the best defense we have against mosquito-borne illnesses," said Kenneth Lowery, district epidemiologist. "While we do see mosquito-borne illnesses in our district every year, that does not mean that we should become complacent about taking precautions."

Mexico: Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

Eight children and adolescents have been the fatal victims of rickettsia during this 2021 in Baja California. It is expected that this disease transmitted by ticks lurks more closely during these summer months. Daniela Miranda Guzman, a veterinarian attached to the Zoonosis program, explained that in the entity, 23 cases of rickettsiosis have been diagnosed, of which 8 died. The young population has been more vulnerable; the expert mentioned that the children and adolescents who were affected had a greater coexistence with their dogs, which carried the infected ticks.

"We are working intensively; we continue working. In the state, we have sprayed 21,764 houses against the tick, and we have treated 17,000 pets against the tick," explained Miranda Guzman. "As of June 21, we have 23 positive cases in the state, and with eight unfortunate deaths; 6 of these cases were in Mexicali, Guadalupe Victoria, Ejido Nuevo Leon, and in the Rio Hardy neighborhood.

"People still do not understand the magnitude of the problem, that living with ticks is not normal, and most of the positive cases that we have had in the state are minors because they tend to live with the pet and a tick gets on them."

Spain: Bluetongue

The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food of the Balearic Government have confirmed a positive case of bluetongue on the island of Mallorca. Following the protocols of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food (MAPA), the Department will collect samples from various farms. 

The samples that tested positive are from a specimen of beef cattle, from a livestock farm in Pollença. The samples have been analyzed by the Central Veterinary Laboratory (LCV) of Algete (Madrid), which belongs to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food.

The General Directorate of Agriculture, Livestock and Rural Development, of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food, is working on the protocols in anticipation of the declaration of a possible outbreak. As a preventive measure, it has suspended the guides for transporting animals to live farms. Slaughter transport guides are allowed.

Bluetongue is a non-contagious infectious viral disease that affects domestic and wild ruminants, caused by an arbovirus that is transmitted only through the bite of infected Culicoides mosquitoes. Bluetongue does not pose any risk to consumers, not even the meat and milk from infected animals.

Laos: Lumpy Skin Disease

According to a report by Lao National Radio, lumpy skin disease [LSD] has spread to cattle throughout 128 villages across seven districts in Vientiane Capital. Head of the Vientiane Capital Department of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr. Lasai Nuanthasing, says the spread of lumpy skin disease in livestock has been recorded in the districts of Hadsayfong, Sangthong, Naxaythong, Sikhottabong, Xaythany, Saysettha, and Pakngeum.

"Some 2,330 animals have become infected with the disease, while 22 deaths have been recorded, and 2,040 recoveries have been made," said Mr. Larsay Nouanthasing. "Lumpy skin disease is a virus that affects the health of cows and buffalo. However, it is not transmissible to humans, and consumption of cow or buffalo meat remains safe after the animals have recovered," Mr. Larsay added.

Experts from the Department of Animal Husbandry and Fisheries are now providing advice to cattle farmers, instructing them to isolate infected animals. While there is no known treatment for the virus that causes LSD itself, secondary infections among animals are usually treated with antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, and vitamin injections.

Togo: Avian Influenza

Togo has culled hundreds of birds, quarantined a poultry farm, closed a local bird market, and banned the movement of poultry following an outbreak of the highly pathogenic H5N1 avian flu, the government said on June 29.

More than 800 birds have been culled, Batasse Batawui, director of livestock at Togo's Ministry of Agriculture, told Reuters.

The government said in a statement that the birds were incinerated and eggs destroyed to stop the spread.

It added that the poultry farm, around 15 km north of the capital, Lome, has been quarantined, and the local poultry and feedstock market closed for 30 days.

June 24, 2021

India: Foot and Mouth Disease

The Animal Husbandry Department has ramped up measures to tackle the spread of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in Alappuzha.

Around 3,000 head of cattle have been affected by the outbreak in the district in the last 1.5 months. At least 193 cattle died of the disease during the period. Around 550 head of cattle have contracted the disease, and 100 perished in the worst-affected Ambalapuzha South and Ambalapuzha North grama panchayats. The disease has also been reported from Thakazhi, Thalavady, Edathua, Chettikulangara, Aryad, Pandanad, and Chengannur.

Treatment and vaccination are being carried out to check the spread of the disease. The department has deployed 140 teams in the affected areas. Special teams with doctors have been deployed to the worst-affected Ambalapuzha South and Ambalapuzha North grama panchayats. Doctors have been appointed to Chengannur, Ambalapuzha, and Veliyanad blocks to deal with emergencies during the night.

Minister of Animal Husbandry J. Chinchurani said the department had taken measures to bring the outbreak under control.

Madagascar: Rift Valley Fever

From April 26 to May 20, 109 total, confirmed and suspected human Rift Valley fever (RVF) cases were reported in 4 regions of Madagascar (Vatovavy Fitovinany, Haute Matsiatra, Alaotra Mangoro, and Analamanga), according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

A total of 10 cases were laboratory-confirmed and 2 deaths were recorded. This followed reports from the Institut Pasteur in Madagascar which confirmed RVF by PCR in animals following alerts of abortion cases in ruminants.

Rift Valley fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic fever that causes illness in animals (such as cattle, buffalo, sheep, goats, and camels). Most people with RVF have either no symptoms or a mild illness with fever, weakness, back pain, and dizziness. A small percentage (8-10%) of people with RVF develop much more severe symptoms, including eye disease, hemorrhage (excessive bleeding), and encephalitis (swelling of the brain). Most people recover within one week. Approximately 1% of people who get RVF die.

United States: Rabies

The Nevada Department of Agriculture Animal Disease Laboratory has confirmed 3 cases of rabies in bats -- one in Washoe County and 2 in Clark County, according to a release from the NDA.

Bats are common throughout Nevada, with their activity increasing between May and October. While other species of wildlife can carry rabies, bats are the most common source of human and domestic animal transmission, making it important to keep pets vaccinated and ensure no contact is made with wildlife.

"It's important to ensure individuals and domestic animals do not come in contact with bats," Laura Morrow, NDA Animal Disease Lab supervisor, said in the release. "If you or your animals have had contact with any bats, contact your local healthcare or veterinary provider immediately."

Any bats, dead or alive, that may have been in contact with people or domestic animals should be reported immediately. Individuals must contact the NDA Animal Disease Lab or their local animal control agency before attempting to pick up a bat. If an individual is asked to collect the bat for testing, they should carefully follow all instructions provided by the agency including using heavy gloves to avoid potential bites.

Guinea: Ebola

The Ebola outbreak that emerged in Guinea in mid-February 2021 was declared over June 19. It was the first time the disease resurfaced in the country since the deadly outbreak in West Africa that ended in 2016.

Guinean health authorities declared the outbreak on Feb. 14 after 3 cases were detected in Gouecke, a rural community in the southern N'zerekore prefecture, the same region where the 2014-2016 outbreak emerged before spreading into neighboring Liberia and Sierra Leone and beyond.

A total of 16 confirmed and 7 probable cases were reported in Guinea's latest outbreak, in which 11 patients survived and 12 lives were lost. Shortly after the infections were detected, national health authorities, with support from the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners, mounted a swift response, tapping into the expertise gained in fighting recent outbreaks both in Guinea and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

United States: Chronic Wasting Disease

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture issued an alert cautioning there have been confirmed cases of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in a white-tailed deer in Warren County, just miles from the New York border.

Pennsylvania has taken CWD very seriously, taking aggressive steps to contain the disease, using a scientific, fact-based approach," Pennsylvania State Veterinarian Dr. Kevin Brightbill said.

In New York, CWD was first discovered in captive and wild deer in Oneida County in 2005. Since then, no new cases of CWD have been found, though the deer in Pennsylvania was approximately 5 miles from the state's border.

According to state wildlife officials in Pennsylvania, the suspect deer was euthanized and no other affected deer were detected at the preserve. The Department of Agriculture also announced the preserve will be quarantined for 5 years to allow for further contact tracing.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has issued an emergency order to impose additional movement and testing restrictions on deer breeding facilities affiliated with 6 facilities where chronic wasting disease (CWD) has been positively detected. Existing rules already restrict the movement of deer from 264 sites in 95 counties directly linked to these CWD-positive facilities, but further measures are necessary given the gravity of this situation.

TPWD and Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) are addressing risks and improving management strategies to protect big game resources from CWD in captive or free-ranging cervid populations. Both agencies recognize the need for full cooperation and partnership among government agencies, deer breeders, private landowners, hunters, conservation organizations, and the general public in managing CWD in Texas.

"This is a very unfortunate development we are committed to addressing as proactively, comprehensively, and expeditiously as possible," said Carter Smith, TPWD Executive Director. "The health of our state's free-ranging and captive deer herds, as well as affiliated hunting, wildlife, and rural-based economies, are vitally important to Texas hunters, communities, and landowners."

Nigeria: Monkeypox

Since September 2017, Nigeria has continued to report sporadic cases of monkeypox.

From September 2017 to May 2021, a total of 446 suspected monkeypox cases have been reported from 30 states. Of the reported cases, 199 (44.6%) have been confirmed in 18 states -- Abia (3), Akwa Ibom (7), Anambra (2), Bayelsa (39), Benue (2), Cross River (13), Delta (22), Ebonyi (1), Edo (7), Ekiti (2), Enugu (4), FCT (5), Imo (8), Lagos (25), Nasarawa (2), Oyo (6), Plateau (3), and Rivers (48).

A total of 8 deaths have also been recorded in 6 States -- Cross River (1), Edo (2), FCT (1), Imo (1), Lagos (2), and Rivers (1).

In 2021, a total of 32 suspected cases have been reported. Of the suspected cases, 7 were confirmed from 5 states Delta (2), Bayelsa (2), Lagos (1), Edo (1), Rivers (1), and no deaths were recorded.

Congo: Monkeypox

From the beginning of 2021 through 16 May, the DRC has seen 1515 monkeypox cases, including 49 deaths.

Last year, the country saw a total of 6,257 suspected cases including 229 deaths that were reported in 133 health zones from 17 out of 26 provinces in the country.

Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease indigenous to Central Africa. In humans, the disease is similar to smallpox, though milder.

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. One 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.

Nigeria: Cholera

While Nigeria is upbeat about the sharp decline in the cases of coronavirus infection, the country's center for disease control (NCDC) has said a total of 289 Nigerians have died from cholera disease between January and June 2021. NCDC, which disclosed this in a statement on June 21, noted that the disease is currently ravaging seven states of the federation. The disease center listed the affected states as Plateau, Bauchi, Gombe, Kano, Zamfara, Bayelsa, and Kaduna.

Cholera -- a diarrheal disease that can kill within hours if not promptly treated, is endemic in Nigeria, with outbreaks reported as far back as the 1970s.

According to NCDC, in the last one month, an increasing number of cholera cases has been reported in most of the aforementioned states, with 441 suspected cases and 6 deaths recorded in Plateau alone, last week.

The cholera outbreak in Bauchi last month has spread across 9 districts in the state with the state capital, Bauchi, being the worst hit, Mohammed Maigoro, the state health commissioner said, in a report by African News. "So far, we have recorded 20 deaths and 322 cases from the cholera outbreak in 9 local government areas of Bauchi in the past 2 weeks," Mr. Maigoro was quoted as saying. "The Bauchi metropolis has been worst affected, accounting for half of the fatalities and 147 out of the 322 reported cases," he added.

United States: Jamestown Canyon Virus

A Sussex County, N.J. resident in his 60s tested positive for Jamestown Canyon virus (JCV) after the onset of fever and neurological symptoms in May. This is the first detection of mosquito-borne disease in the state this year and only the second human case of JCV reported in New Jersey (the 1st case was in 2015, also in Sussex County). JCV is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. There are no vaccines to prevent JCV and treatment consists of supportive care. JCV has not been detected in mosquitoes yet this season but has been detected in previous years.

"Spending time outdoors, whether walking, gardening, or playing with our dogs, is a good way to maintain physical and mental health, but it is important to take steps to prevent mosquito and tick bites, which are responsible for several diseases in New Jersey," said Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. "When enjoying the outdoors, remember to use an EPA-registered insect repellent, cover the skin with clothing when you can, and check yourself and your pets for ticks and quickly remove them with tweezers."

Jamestown Canyon virus circulates widely in North America primarily between deer and mosquitoes but can also infect humans. Reports in humans have been increasing over the last several years as recognition and testing for this virus have increased. Many illnesses caused by JCV are mild, but moderate-to-severe central nervous system involvement requiring hospitalization have been reported, including fatal infections. NJDOH can assist healthcare providers with testing for the Jamestown Canyon virus.

June 10, 2021

Philippines: Typhoid Fever

A total of 68 cases of typhoid fever were recorded in Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon) Region from Jan. 1 to May 19. The province of Laguna recorded the highest incidence of typhoid fever with 30 cases, followed by Cavite with 26, Rizal with 6, and Batangas with 1. Although there is a significant decrease in cases for the same period last year, with 191 cases recorded by the Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit, the surveillance unit cited the need to be cautious to avoid the life-threatening illness.

Kimberly Cu, the DoH-Calabarzon regional medical technologist, said typhoid fever is common in areas with poor hygiene and sanitation and a lack of a safe drinking water source. "If you are unsure of the quality of the water, especially those taken from deep wells, which are untreated, it is best to boil it for at least 2 minutes to kill bacteria," she said. "Also avoid eating unsanitary street-vendor food, as they are commonly exposed to insects and various environmental elements. When eating raw fruit and vegetables, wash them thoroughly with clean water. Essentially, wash hands properly with soap and water before and after eating and also after using the toilet as it is the best way to control infection."

Typhoid is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Salmonella Typhi and is transmitted by fecal-oral route or by consuming food and/or water contaminated by the bacterium. A person with typhoid fever usually suffers from sustained high fever, headache, malaise, loss of appetite, and diarrhea or constipation.

Russia: Anthrax

A village in the Russian region of Tuva has gone into lockdown after a local was found to have contracted anthrax, according to the district's acting head. Anthrax is a serious bacterial infection that is often deadly to humans. The Tuva Republic is almost 2,500 miles east of Moscow and is located in southern Siberia.

Writing on Russian social network VKontakte, Vladislav Khovalyg announced a single positive case of infection in Bizhiktig-Khaya, a settlement near the country's border with Mongolia. "To prevent the spread of the dangerous disease, we are forced to introduce quarantine in the village of Bijiktig-Haya, Barun-Khemchiksky District," he wrote. "A 29-year-old resident is suspected of having contracted anthrax."

According to Khovalyg, the patient is receiving the necessary medical care and has a less aggressive, cutaneous form of the disease. "Doctors are monitoring the condition of those who have had contact with the infected person," he added. The official also revealed that an interdepartmental commission had already begun working in the Tuvan village to discover the causes of the infection. "Samples are being taken that will allow us to give a competent opinion on the situation in the near future," he explained.

Iraq: Avian Influenza

A statement from the Basrah governorate's office, a copy of which was obtained by Al-Mirbad, says that since information about the death of poultry in the Safwan areas, west of Basrah, was received and samples analyzed by the competent authorities, suspecting the emergence of bird flu disease, the governor, Asaad Al-Eidani, directed the formation of a crisis unit to follow up on the matter and investigate the facts about infection with the disease, especially confirming the recent analyses and results.

The statement added that the unit began holding its 1st meetings in the presence of officials from Basrah health, the relevant hospital, national security, operations command, and some concerned parties, while urgent and strict measures will be taken to control the situation and limit its spread as quickly as possible.

A security source told Al-Mirbad earlier Jun. 4 that samples taken from a poultry farm in the Khor Al-Zubair area in Basrah governorate to Baghdad laboratories were confirmed to be infected with bird flu, while a security force went to quarantine the premises and workers, and the Zubair Agriculture Directorate confirmed the death of thousands of chickens in poultry farms due to bird flu.

Poland: African Swine Fever

A second farm has been found infected with African swine fever (ASF) in Western Poland this year. A facility in the pig-rich Greater Poland province with 3,000 pigs on-site tested positive on May 26. The farm is located in Miedzychod district in Greater Poland, the authorities of Greater Poland province reported 68 miles from the border with Germany. The farm's pigs will be culled, and all biosecurity measures are in place.

In the direct surroundings, three outbreaks of ASF had recently been found in wild boar. These outbreaks were rather remarkable because no outbreaks had been reported from the Greater Poland province since September 2020. The cluster is located roughly 30 miles away from the nearest other known ASF cases of infected wild boars. A search team is doing surveillance to detect whether more animals are found with ASF. They are equipped with drones for the observation of areas difficult to reach.

To place things in context, in 2020 in total 103 farms were infected with ASF virus. Some of them were commercial facilities, but the majority were backyard farms. Ever since ASF broke out in wild boar in Poland in 2014, there have been 342 farms infected, the vast majority of these being in Eastern Poland. So far, 14 farms have been infected in Western Poland. There the virus popped up in a separate cluster in November 2019.

Turkey: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

The Health Ministry announced on May 31 that Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF), a zoonotic virus, had claimed 13 lives across the country amid the coronavirus pandemic so far this year. The ministry noted that the fatality rate from the tick-borne disease had noticeably dropped to 3.28% last year, from 5.64% in 2018.

The ministry's figures, quoted by Anadolu Agency (AA), show 243 cases reported this year across the country.

CCHF is a widespread disease that is caused by a tick-borne virus of the Bunyaviridae family that results in severe viral hemorrhagic fever outbreaks. Animals are carriers, and tick bites or contact with blood or body fluid from an infected person or animal can spread the virus. Common symptoms of the disease are fever, headache, general body pain, and fatigue.

Personal protection measures are vital for disease control. The disease is common in more than 30 countries, particularly in the Middle East, Asia, Eastern Europe, and Africa. The Health Ministry says up to 25% of those infected with the virus contract the disease in other countries, and in some, it is up to 80%, while it is only up to 5% in Turkey. CCHF cases are concentrated in the northern parts of central Anatolia, where the country's agricultural hubs are located, in the central areas of the Black Sea region at the north of the country, and north of the eastern Anatolia region.

Russia: Avian Influenza

Two incidents of transmission of bird flu viruses to humans have been recorded in 2021, Anna Popova, the head of Russia's consumer health watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, told Sputnik.

"This year alone, we have 2 viruses of animal flu, in particular birds, which began to infect humans. One of them was reported by our scientists at the Vector Centre in February; this is the H5N8 virus, which we have known for a long time. The second case, reported this week by our Chinese colleagues, is H10N3. A person contracted bird flu," Popova said on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). The official said that the goal now is to "learn lessons" from the COVID-19 pandemic and get ready "so that no infection is critically dangerous for us."

The World Health Organization's spokesperson told Sputnik that WHO is conducting a risk assessment of a human case of a strain of bird flu jointly with China after China's National Health Commission confirmed the first human case of the H10N3 strain of bird flu.

Argentina: Rabies

The College of Veterinarians of the Province, and the local Food Science Directorate warned about the need to prevent rabies through vaccination. All animals should be vaccinated. No matter where they live, in closed yards, apartments, or terraces, the risk is significant and the disease deadly.

"We do prevention against rabies fundamentally with the anti-rabies vaccination of pets," highlighted the Director of Food Science, veterinarian Andrés Castro.

The issue runs through news agencies again and again and crosses the community as a whole because after 40 years, in the province of Buenos Aires, a woman died in Coronel Suárez as a result of being infected with rabies by a cat that bit her.

"It is very difficult to reach the population and for the population to become aware," said the veterinarian. Because despite there being a vaccine that can be applied for free in mass vaccination campaigns or even every day in the Bromatology [Food Science] facility; there are people who do not know or underestimate the occurrence of the virus. 

England: Brucellosis

The lockdown puppy boom has sparked fears over a disease that can be transferred from dogs to humans -- leaving owners with fevers and back pain.

The new disease, brucellosis, has seen a 1,900% rise in just 3 years -- with health authorities now stepping up checks in a bid to control it.

Infection in dogs is transmitted in mating or contact with after-birth fluids.

The disease has been detected in 60 dogs in the past year compared to just 3 in 2017/18 -- with fears that the rise in people buying pets during lockdown will see it rise even further.

While the bacterial infection is incurable for canines with most being put to sleep, it can leave people with fevers and chills, sweats, headaches, back pains, and physical weakness.

The disease can be treated with antibiotics for humans, though in some cases it can remain for life.

Brazil: Malaria

Strategic actions to combat the malaria-transmitting mosquito are being intensified in the Yanomami Special Indigenous Sanitary District (DSEI) of Brazil. The district drew up the Action Plan for Emergency Malaria Control, which is already being carried out in 10 Base Poles, where epidemiological investigation pointed out as places with the highest incidence of the disease.

The reduction of malaria cases is one of the goals agreed upon in the Yanomami District Plan for Indigenous Health, formulated by the DSEI, with support from the Ministry of Health, through the Special Secretariat for Indigenous Health (SESAI). "This action is for the ten priority Base Poles according to epidemiological stratification, but it encompasses the entire district. We have been articulating with all sectors to expand and cover the goals agreed upon in the plan", says Pedro Galdino, head of the Indigenous Health Care Division (DIASI) of the DSEI Yanomami.

The plan includes strategies to fight the transmission of malaria and prevention actions in the communities of the Yanomami Indigenous Territory.

Congo: Typhoid Fever

An epidemic of typhoid fever has been confirmed in the health zone of Popokabaka by the National Institute of Biomedical Research (INRB). Since the beginning of this year, the epidemic has caused more than 360 cases, including 17 deaths, said Dr. Aimé Kayolo, head of the provincial health division of Kwilu province.

Among these cases, Dr. Aimé Kayolo said that there were 45 cases complicated by intestinal perforations and 17 deaths, 10 of which were post-operative. Abdominal pain, fever, constipation, sometimes abdominal bloating and others are among the signs that patients suffering from this disease present, he continued.

While calling on the population of Popokabaka to apply food hygiene measures, he announced an awareness campaign against this pathology for next week.

United States: Influenza

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported one human infection with an influenza A(H1N1) variant (A(H1N1)v) virus in Iowa. The patient is an adult, was not hospitalized, and has completely recovered from their illness.

Investigation into the source of the infection revealed that the patient works on a farm with swine present. No human-to-human transmission of A(H1N1)v virus has been identified associated with this patient.

This is the second influenza A(H1N1)v virus infection identified in the USA that occurred in 2021.

Five human infections with a novel influenza A virus have been reported in the USA this season, including one H3N2v (WI), one H1N2v (OH), and 3 H1N1v (IA, NC, WI) infections. Three infections have occurred in children, and 2 have occurred in adults. All cases either had direct contact with swine or lived on a property with swine present, says the CDC.

When an influenza virus that normally circulates in swine (but not people) is detected in a person, it is called a "variant influenza virus."

June 4,2021

United States: Plague

El Paso County, Colo., Public Health announced the plague has been confirmed in a domestic pet on the north side of downtown Colorado Springs.

The announcement comes soon after the department confirmed multiple squirrels had tested positive for the plague in the Old North End area of Colorado Springs. The health department wants to remind the public to protect themselves and the public from the plague by simply recognizing what you can look for and what you can do.

Plague is not uncommon for rock squirrels, prairie dogs, and other species of ground squirrels and chipmunks in Colorado. Pets can get plagued by catching and eating infected rodents and rabbits or by being bitten by infected fleas. They may carry infected fleas home to their owners or directly infect other animals and their owners. Plague is treatable if caught early on, but there could be life-threatening complications if treatment is delayed.

Australia: Meningitis

Two cases of meningococcal disease have been confirmed in Sydney this week, sparking fears of a full-blown outbreak. The boys, from Manly on the city's Northern Beaches, are high school students who are members of the same sporting club; two of their teammates are awaiting test results. The two confirmed cases have been responding well to their treatment, The Daily Telegraph reported. One case was confirmed to have the type B strain of the disease while the other has yet to be determined.

Northern Sydney Local Health District warned locals to watch for signs of the disease, which can kill in less than a day or result in the loss of limbs.

Australia: Leptospirosis

A 70-year-old Dunedoo pub owner caught a deadly infection from the mice plaguing New South Wales, leaving him in hospital with acute kidney failure, liver failure, and a leaky heart valve.

Leptospirosis is caused by Leptospira bacteria, which are found in urine from infected animals, including rats, mice, cattle, pigs, and dogs. The bacteria can enter the body through skin cuts or abrasions or the lining of the mouth, nose, and eyes by exposure to water, soil, or mud contaminated with the urine from infected animals.

Leptospirosis is widespread throughout the world, and of which there are several varieties. It is usually contracted during activity in connection with urine-contaminated freshwater or contaminated animals. Incubation, of varying duration, can range from 2 to 21 days.

India: Glanders

Two horses were tested positive for glanders disease in the Jhajjar district of Haryana. Glanders, a contagious disease, primarily affects horses. It is caused by the bacterium Burkholderia mallei. "Glanders among equines is incurable. Horses that contracted the disease will be euthanized. A total of 143 blood samples were sent for testing," said Dr. Manish Dabas, Deputy Director, Animal husbandry

Nigeria: Cholera

Gombe state government confirmed that seven persons, including a 2-year-old boy, have died from the outbreak of cholera in the Akko local government area of the state.

The state Commissioner for health, Dr. Habu Dahiru, who confirmed this to journalists at the Heal Emergency Operation Centre, said the 2-year-old boy died in Kalajanga village of Akko local government area.

Dahiru said that, so far, 32 cases have been treated and discharged, while six are currently on admission. He added that a Rapid Response Team was deployed immediately; cases were confirmed in the laboratory, and a free treatment center for cases was established at BOGO Model Primary Health Centre.

"The onset of the rainy season at times heralds the period for cholera outbreaks attributable to drinking contaminated water. Cholera is characterized by severe diarrhea and vomiting and can be rapidly fatal if prompt and urgent actions are not taken toward the management of cases and effective infection prevention control. It is easily spread in the community if control measures are sub-optimal," said Dahiru.

Canada: Strangles

There is one new confirmed case of strangles at the Red Shores racetrack in Charlottetown.

A horse started showing signs on May 8 and was removed from the stables. It later tested positive for the illness.

Lee Drake, manager of racing and broadcast with Red Shores, says no other horses are showing any signs at this time.

"We know the protocols; everything has been handled the way we felt it should be handled in terms of removing any horses that have any potential signs," he said.

"We'll continue with further testing and wait for some more consulting with the veterinarians."

India: Japanese Encephalitis

A day after a 2-year-old child died of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) at Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital in Muzaffarpur, chief minister Nitish Kumar reviewed the preparedness and announced the extension of the socio-economic survey to all the AES-affected districts, including the 5 blocks of Muzaffarpur where it is already going on.

This is the first case of the death of a child in the district due to AES this year. Sitamarhi, East, and West Champaran have reported one AES death each this year. The disease, which mainly affects children below 15 years of age and returns almost every year in certain districts of north Bihar, particularly Muzaffarpur, left more than 200 children dead in 2019 alone.

Confirming the death, the deputy superintendent of the SKMCH, Dr. GS Sahni, said the child was brought to the hospital with a high temperature and convulsions. "Pathological and clinical tests confirmed AES in him. His blood sugar level was also very low, resulting in his death," he said, adding that altogether 20 cases of confirmed AES have been reported so far.

Netherlands: Avian Influenza

Wageningen Bioveterinary Research (WBVR) has confirmed yet another introduction of bird flu [avian influenza] at a Dutch poultry farm. It concerns highly pathogenic H5N8 bird flu at a turkey farm in Weert.

To prevent the virus from spreading, the turkey farm (13 000 animals) was culled by the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority. In the 1 kilometer zone around the infected farm, there is one other poultry farm that was culled to prevent viral spread (66 000 animals).

Bird flu was not found at seven other poultry farms in the 3 km zone.

In the 10 km zone, there are 128 other poultry farms. In this zone, a transport ban applies. This ban covers poultry, eggs, poultry manure, and used bedding, as well as other animals and certain products from commercial poultry companies. Part of this zone is in Belgium and measures of the Belgian authorities apply there.

China: Avian Influenza

A 41-year-old man in China's eastern province of Jiangsu has been confirmed as the first human case of infection with a rare strain of bird flu known as H10N3, Beijing's National Health Commission (NHC) said. Many different strains of bird flu are present in China and some sporadically infect people, usually those working with poultry. There is no indication that H10N3 can spread easily in humans.

The man, a resident of the city of Zhenjiang, is now stable and he is ready to be discharged. Investigation of his close contacts found no other cases, the NHC said. No other cases of human infection with H10N3 have been reported globally, it added. H10N3 is low pathogenic, which means it causes relatively less severe disease in poultry and is unlikely to cause a large-scale outbreak, the NHC added.

 The World Health Organization (WHO), in a reply to Reuters in Geneva, said: "The source of the patient's exposure to the H10N3 virus is not known at this time, and no other cases were found in emergency surveillance among the local population. At this time, there is no indication of human-to-human transmission. As long as avian influenza viruses circulate in poultry, sporadic infection of avian influenza in humans is not surprising, which is a vivid reminder that the threat of an influenza pandemic is persistent."

Congo: Cholera

At least 6 cases of cholera were reported among the displaced people in the city of Sake, about 26 kilometers north of Goma, capital of North Kivu province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), after the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano nearby.

According to the announcement by local authorities, the six confirmed cases of cholera are currently being treated on-site by the team of Doctors Without Borders. These cases are reported among thousands of people living in Sake and others from Goma who have taken refuge in schools and churches in the region, following the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano.

With the risk of a fresh eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano, the authorities redirected the majority of the inhabitants of Goma to the city of Sake, which is said to have taken in more than 180,000 displaced people from Goma, according to the UN. Lack of water, toilets, and other sanitary facilities are believed to have led to the outbreak of cholera cases.

United States: Equine Infectious Anemia

The Tennessee state veterinarian is alerting horse owners of cases of equine infectious anemia (EIA), a potentially fatal blood-borne illness. Two horses in Shelby County, Tennessee recently tested positive for EIA. The stable is now under quarantine and animal health officials are testing additional horses on the premises.

"EIA is a devastating illness with serious consequences," state veterinarian Dr. Samantha Beaty said. "Early detection is key to preventing the spread. Maintaining a current Coggins test on your horse is vitally important, along with practicing good biosecurity at home and on the road."

EIA does not cause disease in humans. However, it is very dangerous for horses because there is no vaccine or treatment. As a blood-borne illness, it is commonly transmitted through biting insects or sharing needles among horses. Symptoms may include fever, lethargy, swelling, loss of appetite, or colic. However, an infected horse may not show any clinical signs. If infected, horses must be permanently quarantined or euthanized.

May 28, 2021

United States: Eastern Equine Encephalitis

On May 19 the Florida Department of Health in Orange County (DOH-Orange) advised residents there has been an increase in mosquito-borne disease activity in areas of Orange County.

Several sentinel chickens in one flock have tested positive for eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV) infection. The risk of transmission to humans has increased, however, chicken flocks do not correlate to the risk of EEEV infections to humans.

Orange County Mosquito Control and DOH-Orange continue surveillance and prevention efforts. The Department reminds residents and visitors to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes and to take basic precautions to help limit exposure.

Congo: Plague

Since April 23, Ituri province has recorded 15 cases of plague, including 11 deaths. It was Dr. Louis Tshulo, head of the provincial health division (DPS), in this province who announced this. According to the division's chief doctor, it is the bubonic plague, which killed 5 members of the same family among the cases of death.

"The victims showed symptoms of headache, fever, cough, and vomiting blood. The report showed 15 cases including 11 deaths so far. The first case was that of a lady who had died in the Fataki health zone in the Bukachele health zone. A week later, a 30-year-old man also died after showing the same symptoms. On May 8, there was another man who died. We were alerted when there were already 5 deaths in this health area in the same family. Afterwards, there were 2 people who had left for the burial place in Bukachele who, on their return, became ill and died in Bule," informed Dr. Tshulo.

The head of the Ituri DPS reassured that Fataki's intervention teams are continuing to investigate.

United States: Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease

RHDV2 has recently been confirmed in a domestic rabbit in Custer County. According to a release from South Dakota's State Veterinarian, this is the first confirmed case in domestic rabbits in the state.

Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease Virus 2 is an infectious viral disease of rabbits killing 80 to 100% of infected animals. RHDV2 does not affect humans or other animals.

Rabbit owners who have questions should contact their veterinarian. Anyone suspecting the disease in rabbits should notify the South Dakota State Veterinarian's office at 605-773-3321.

Palestinian Authority: West Nile Virus

A significant number of horses and veterinarians in Northern Palestine have been exposed to the West Nile virus, research reveals.

West Nile fever is a mosquito-borne disease affecting humans and domesticated animals.

In humans, about 80% of cases involve no symptoms, although in 20% of cases infected individuals develop flu-like symptoms for 3-6 days. Only about 1% of infected people fall seriously ill with neurological symptoms, mainly meningitis and encephalitis.

In horses, the clinical signs of West Nile infection include fever, impaired balance, behavioral changes, and muscle weakness or paralysis. About 10% of affected horses show neurological problems.

Ibrahim Alzuheir and his fellow researchers, writing in the journal Veterinary World, said the clinical signs of West Nile fever in horses can be hard to differentiate from those of other diseases, leading to misdiagnosis.

Serum samples from 100 veterinarians and 87 horses were collected for analysis, targeting cities in Northern Palestine. Antibodies against West Nile virus were detected in 60.9% of the horse serum samples and 23% of the samples from veterinarians.

Thailand: Lumpy Skin Disease

An outbreak of lumpy skin disease [LSD] among cattle has been reported in many districts of this northeastern border province, local media reported.

In Na Kae district alone, almost 500 cattle were reported to have been infected with the disease in 12 tambons, particularly in tambon Phiman, where 200 cattle were infected and 6 died.

LSD is an infectious disease in cattle caused by a virus of the family Poxviridae. The disease is characterized by fever, enlarged superficial lymph nodes, and multiple nodules on the skin and mucous membranes.

The government said May 23 that more than 6,700 cows and buffaloes in 35 provinces had been affected.

Local media said the outbreak in Nakhon Phanom, which began about 3 months ago, had caused economic problems to farmers already affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Pakistan: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

Two suspected Congo fever patients were admitted to a Quetta hospital May 23. Noorullah Moosakhail, the medical superintendent of Fatima Jinnah Chest and General Hospital, said that 2 patients came to the hospital with symptoms similar to Congo fever. Their samples have been taken and sent to the laboratory.

The patients have been moved to the hospital's isolation ward and their symptoms are being monitored.

Congo fever is transmitted by the bite of a tick carrying the Congo virus. It is usually transferred to humans from livestock animals through the tick or by coming in contact with the blood, fluids, or meat of an infected animal. It can also be transmitted between humans by close contact or through body fluids and blood.

Congo fever symptoms include high-grade fever, muscle ache, vomiting, or diarrhea with blood, bleeding from the gums or mouth, dizziness, nausea, abdominal pain, and sore throat.

United States: Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

A one-year-old boy has been in the intensive care unit for the last week under sedation fighting Rocky Mountain spotted fever, a rare tick-borne infection caused by a common wood tick. "It's so new a lot of the people we meet [at the hospital) say they have never seen a case here," said the mother.

The infection is most common across the central USA from the Carolinas to Kansas, but it is suspected he picked it up in a new development in Buffalo, MN, which also happens to be his backyard. "We don't live in a wooded area, we don't live in northern Minnesota," his mother said. "It is just an open field, a farm field.

A 104-degree fever and a rash initially led to a hand, foot and mouth disease diagnosis, but after continued deterioration, he was rushed to Children's Minnesota in Minneapolis. His older sister also developed a high fever and rash and is being treated for the same infection. "She has no life-threatening risk at this moment, so she will be tested in 4 to 6 weeks to see," the mother said.

Nigeria: Cholera

At least 20 people have been killed by cholera following a recent outbreak of the disease in parts of Nigeria's northeast state of Bauchi, an official said May 25.

Speaking at a news conference in Bauchi city, the state capital, Aliyu Maigoro, the state commissioner of health, said the state has instituted several control measures to combat the outbreak which has killed at least 20 people since April 2021.

Maigoro said the index case was a 37-year-old housewife, who was admitted at a hospital on April 24 in Ningi local government area. "Upon her admission, it was discovered there is an ongoing outbreak of the similar disease in neighboring communities," said Maigoro, adding the disease has been found in 9 local government areas in the state, and more than 300 people have been infected.

He said measures are in place to contain the spread, including mounting continuous surveillance for all epidemic-prone diseases as well as active search for cases of diarrhea and vomiting.

Pakistan: Leishmaniasis

Leishmaniasis [cutaneous] has affected hundreds of people, including children and elderly, in the Lachi tehsil and several adjoining villages. The disease is caused from a bite by sand fly.

The affected people have been left with scars on the face and other body parts.

The focal person on the disease said the sand fly parasite had come from Afghanistan and Balochistan during the war against terrorism, as earlier there was no sign of it in the country.

He said that, presently, 150 patients were undergoing long treatment of taking 18-20 injections after every 2 weeks. He said the scars remained on the skin for over a year.

The focal person said it was possible to control the spread of the disease by killing the female phlebotomine sand fly, which caused the infection, but the government lacked the resources. He said teams should be mobilized to fumigate mountains, ponds, forests, and fields.

Nepal: Avian Influenza

Bird flu [avian influenza] has been detected at 3 places in Kathmandu again, according to the Department of Livestock Services.

The presence of bird flu (H5N8) was confirmed after samples collected from Turkey farms located at Kirtipur wards 4 and 9 and Chandragiri Municipality-2 showed positive reports.

All bodies concerned at the provincial, local level working in the field of livestock services were mobilized to destroy fowls including birds and chickens that can transmit the infection.

A total of 535 turkeys, 592 chickens, 76 quails, 20 ducks, 178 eggs, and 900 kilograms of poultry feed were disposed of to prevent the transmission of the disease in livestock.

The department has urged poultry farmers to adopt precautionary measures to stop the further spread of the infection and come into contact if they have any problems with their poultry.

United States: Plague

El Paso County Public Health announced May 26 the plague has been confirmed in a domestic pet on the north side of downtown Colorado Springs.

The announcement comes soon after the department confirmed multiple squirrels had tested positive for the plague in the Old North End area of Colorado Springs. The health department wants to remind the public to protect themselves and the public from the plague by simply recognizing what you can look for and what you can do.

Plague is not uncommon for rock squirrels, prairie dogs, and other species of ground squirrels and chipmunks in Colorado. Pets can get plague by catching and eating infected rodents and rabbits or by being bitten by infected fleas. They may carry infected fleas home to their owners or directly infect other animals and their owners. Plague is treatable if caught early on, but there could be life-threatening complications if treatment is delayed.

Australia: Meningitis

Two cases of meningococcal disease have been confirmed in Sydney this week, sparking fears of a full-blown outbreak. The boys, from Manly on the city's Northern Beaches, are high school students who are members of the same sporting club; 2 of their teammates are awaiting test results. The 2 confirmed cases have been responding well to their treatment, The Daily Telegraph reported. One case was confirmed to have the type B strain of the disease while the other has yet to be determined.

Northern Sydney Local Health District warned locals to watch for signs of the disease, which can kill in less than a day or result in the loss of limbs. There are 5 common strains of meningococcal disease in Australia - A, B, C, W, and Y. Immunizations for the types A, C, W, and Y are available under the National Immunization Program. The vaccination for meningococcal types A, C, W, and Y is available under the National Immunization Program for children at 12-months-old and students in year 10. The vaccination for the type B strain is not under the National Immunization Program for Children program.

May 21, 2021

Australia: leptospirosis

The horror mouse plague has coincided with a spike in a rodent-borne bacterial disease in Queensland with case numbers almost doubling in 2021. Queensland has reported 78 cases of leptospirosis to date this year, compared with only 41 cases at the same time last year.

The case numbers might not seem like a lot, but the rate of infection has grown 70 percent compared with the 5-year average.

A total of 81 cases were reported in 2020, and 56 in 2019 according to Queensland Health.

The disease is caused by the Leptospira bacteria, found in the urine of infected animals including mice, rats, cattle, pigs, and dogs, Professor Keith McNeil, a spokesman for Queensland Health, said.

Leptospirosis has been reported in Cairns, the Hinterland, and Darling Downs regions.

Uganda: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

In a follow-up on the Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) situation in Kikuube district in the western part of the country, health officials report a second case epidemiologically linked to the case-patient as a primary contact.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the first case was confirmed on April 28 in a 16-year-old female from Munsiinsa-A village in the Kyangwali Refugee Settlement, Kikuube district.

The second case is a 13-year-old male from Busisa-Kyangwali, who was admitted on April 29 with a high-grade fever, blood in his urine, and vomiting blood.

Both patients are currently stable and showing signs of improvement. WHO says Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is known to be present in livestock in Uganda, and the country is experienced in responding to outbreaks of infectious diseases, as evidenced by the prompt diagnosis, isolation, and treatment of the 2 cases so far.

Saudi Arabia: MERS

A news article from May 6 has reported that Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Health (MOH) reported a new MERS-CoV [Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus] case, which involves a 36-year-old man who died from his infection.

The man was from Hafr Al-Batin in the country's northeast. An investigation found that the man had been exposed to camels. He wasn't a healthcare worker and isn't thought to have contracted MERS-CoV from another person. The case marks Saudi Arabia's 8th of the year. The World Health Organization (WHO) said that, since 2012, when the virus was first detected in humans, it has received reports of 2,574 confirmed cases, at least 886 of them fatal.

United States: Plague

Several squirrels have died near downtown Colorado Springs and public health officials suspect plague to be the cause.

The squirrels, found in Patty Jewett and Divine Redeemer neighborhoods, were tested for the disease, and results are expected in coming days, a news release from El Paso County Public Health said.

The news comes two days after the health department discovered a squirrel on Colorado College's campus that likely had the disease.

El Paso County Public said the disease is not uncommon among rodents and small mammals during cooler summer months after wet winters.

Colorado surpassed average levels of precipitation by an inch during the past 6 months, a recent Gazette article reported.

Guinea: Lassa Fever

A fatal case of Lassa hemorrhagic fever was officially reported in Guinea by the health authorities on May 17. Given this situation and in the application of the International Health Regulations (IHR), the Ministry of Health declared a Lassa fever epidemic in Yomou Prefecture, Nzérékoré Region, where the new Ebola epidemic started last February.

"At a time when the Guinean Government is making commendable efforts for the dual response to the COVID 19 pandemic and the Ebola epidemic in Guinea, the country has just recorded a fatal case of Lassa fever in Yomou Prefecture during May 2021," the General-Doctor Rémy Lamah announced.

An investigation is underway in the villages concerned, and to date, 30 contacts have been identified and followed up on, said the Minister of Health, who emphasizes that the sample taken from the deceased index case is positive for Lassa fever after double confirmation by the Laboratories of Nzérékoré and that of hemorrhagic fevers of Conakry.

Oman: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

Media news articles from May 11-12 stated that Oman's Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources (MAFWR) has urged citizens and residents to follow preventive guidelines to protect against Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever [CCHF] by avoiding tick bites when dealing with animals, both when buying and selling them.

The report, carried by a leading Arabic news site, quoted Dr. Khaled bin Muslim al Sulaymani, a veterinarian at the Department of Animal Health, as saying that CCHF is a dangerous viral disease that affects humans, causing fever and severe disease symptoms that may even be fatal. He added that the disease is transmitted to humans through tick bites or direct contact with the blood or tissues of infected animals during or immediately after slaughter.

The disease also affects various animals such as sheep, goats, cows, and camels via insects.

He emphasized that the ministry continues to coordinate with the competent authorities in educating the public about this disease. He said that the ministry seeks to control the disease and limit its spread among livestock herds by combating ticks by spraying barns with appropriate pesticides as well as quarantining imported animals in veterinary quarantines.

Uganda; Anthrax

Kween district is under surveillance after cases of anthrax, which started last month.

Health officials in the district say that 15 of 19 people are undergoing treatment, and more than 15 head of cattle have so far succumbed to the disease.

Phily Musobo, the Kween district Surveillance Officer told Uganda Radio Network (URN) that the disease broke out on April 12 after 6 people reportedly ate meat from a cow.

He cited the affected villages of Chekwosum, Sukut, and Kaptokolo in the 2 parishes of Kaptoyoy and Toswo of Kaptoyoy sub-county, Ngenge Sub County, Giligi, and the neighboring sub-counties, where the disease is said to have originated and spread to Kaptoi and Kwosir.

He noted that one person succumbed to the disease late last month. The victim was from Kapchorwa where the disease is said to have spread.

United States: Rabies

One person was exposed to a rabid bat found in Richland County, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) said May 17. The bat was sent to DHEC's lab for testing and was confirmed to have rabies, officials said in a news release.

The animal was discovered in Columbia, in the area of Converse Street and Clemson Avenue near Crayton Middle School, according to the release. That's close to Forest Drive and A.C. Floria High School.

The person has been told to seek medical care, health officials said. Further information on the person's condition was not made available.

Getting pets vaccinated for rabies is the best way to protect against the disease, DHEC said. No pets are known to have been exposed to the bat in this incident, according to the release.

United States: Chronic Wasting Disease

Wildlife officials are alerting people to a diseased deer killed in Montgomery County.

On May 12, the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources announced a deer killed in the county and brought to a taxidermist in late November 2020 has tested positive for the chronic wasting disease. At the time of kill, the hunter did not notice any outward signs of disease, and the deer appeared to be in good condition, according to DWR.

The department does not believe this case is linked to any prior CWD cases, as the closest documented case was more than 160 miles away in Madison County.

During the 2020-2021 deer hunting season, cooperating taxidermists submitted samples from more than 2,600 deer, and the only CWD detection to result from this statewide effort was this Montgomery County deer, according to DWR.

May 14, 2021

China: Avian Influenza

On May 4 Hong Kong's CHP reported mainland China's 12th H9N2 infection of 2021, involving a 30-year-old woman from Guangdong province with onset on April 20. Also, Cambodia reported a case -- also in April -- involving a 3-year-old boy.

While most H9N2 infections are mild, their reported incidence has risen sharply in 2021. Whether this rise is more to do with better surveillance and reporting or is propelled by increased transmission of the virus to humans, is unknown.

The following update comes from the WHO Western Pacific Regional Office (WPRO):

"To date, 12 cases of avian influenza A(H9N2) have been reported from China in 2021, and a total of 54 cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H9N2) have been reported in the Western Pacific Region since December 2015."

Uganda: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

Health officials in Kikuube district have confirmed an outbreak of the Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever in the district.

The virus, caused by a tick-borne virus, is primarily transmitted to people from ticks and livestock animals, while human-to-human transmission occurs from close contact with the blood, secretions, organs, or other bodily fluids of infected persons. It has a case fatality rate of up to 40%.

Dr. Nicholas Kwikiriza, the Kikuube district health officer (DHO), confirmed the outbreak of the disease in an interview with Uganda Radio Network. This came after a 16-year-old girl, a refugee, and resident of Musiinsa A village in the Kyangwali refugee settlement area, tested positive for the disease.

Dr. Kwikiriza said the victim was rushed to Kagoma health center II within the settlement area with a high fever and a temperature of 38.1 deg C [100.6 deg F]. She also had a severe headache, fatigue, abdominal pain, and joint pain and was vomiting blood and bleeding from the nose.

Dr. Kwikiriza says her blood samples were immediately drawn and taken to Uganda Virus Research Institute in Entebbe, and she tested positive for Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. The victim has been transferred from Kagoma health center II to Kasonga Ebola Treatment Unit, where she is currently undergoing treatment.

Nigeria: Cholera

No fewer than 15 persons have died, and scores have been hospitalized as a result of a suspected cholera outbreak in Koya village in Minjibiri Local Government Area of Kano State.

Though the Ministry of Health is yet to comment on the development, village head of the community, Sulieman Mohammad confirmed the deaths to journalists, saying victims included children and women. He said a victim died about 15 minutes after he broke his Muslim fast on May 7.

It was learned that health officials from the state government are already in the affected village and have been counseling residents against drinking water from wells and streams in the community.

Chairman of Minjibiri LGA, Saleh Ado Minijibiri, at a press conference, said the cholera outbreak could have been caused by indiscriminate digging and poor management of feces and urine sucker pits by residents. He said that while special arrangements have been made for those already hospitalized in a bid to contain the spread of the disease, a stakeholders' meeting geared at permanently addressing the issue would be held in the council soon.

Reunion: Leptospirosis

Each year, more than 50 cases of leptospirosis are recorded in Réunion, the majority of them requiring hospitalization. Since the start of the year, a significant increase in the number of reports has been observed with 74 cases of leptospirosis reported in 2021, including 35 cases in April.

The rainy season is the period of greatest risk because it presents temperature and rainfall conditions favorable to the survival in the environment of the bacteria Leptospira responsible for this disease. Heavy rain episodes promote soil leaching and environmental contamination and are therefore particularly risky periods.

Leptospirosis is a serious disease caused by bacteria often found in rats and other rodents. The disease is contracted upon contact with a humid environment contaminated by the urine of these infected animals (sludge, puddles, stagnant water at the edge of gullies). The bacteria enter the body through the skin if there are cuts or wounds (even small ones). After a few days of incubation, leptospirosis manifests itself with the following symptoms (which can be easily mistaken for dengue or COVID-19 infection): sudden onset high fever; muscle and joint pain; stomach pain, nausea, vomiting; and headache. The disease may get worse after a few days. If it is not treated in time with antibiotics, it can be fatal.

United States: Lyme Disease

Doctors in Oregon have described what might be one of the unluckiest encounters between man and tick ever documented. They report treating a 70-year-old man who became sick with 3 entirely different infections after a single tick bite.

According to a recent case study, published last month in BMI Reports, the man visited an emergency room with symptoms of fever, nausea, and a distinct swelling around his ankle along with leg pain. Tests showed that he had anemia (a low red blood cell count) and thrombocytopenia (a low platelet count), as well as acute kidney injury and possible liver damage.

The man told doctors that a month earlier he had noticed a bite on the same ankle -- presumed to have been caused by an insect. The bite had appeared following a trip to the Northeastern US, leading doctors to suspect that it was caused by a disease-carrying tick. When further blood tests arrived, though, even they were surprised by the results. The man not only tested positive for Borrelia burgdorferi, the cause of Lyme disease, but also the bacteria Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia microti, the causes of anaplasmosis and babesiosis, respectively.

Thailand: Lumpy Skin Disease

The Department of Livestock Development is seeking a vaccine for lumpy skin disease [LSD], spreading across the kingdom's cattle population, said Sorravis Thaneto, director-general of the department. Mr. Sorravis said the department is contacting vaccine producers overseas to buy sufficient doses and import them into the country.

The disease is spreading among cattle pens in 18 provinces in the Northeast, Central Plains region, and the North, including Kalasin, Roi Et, Nakhon Phanom, Maha Sarakham, Khon Kaen, Kanchanaburi, Nakhon Pathom, and Chiang Rai. Department officials first detected the disease last month in Don Daeng village in Roi Et's Phanom Phrai district, and the finding was reported to the World Organization for Animal Health.

It is spread through mosquitoes, flies, and ticks. The department has told staff to impose disease control measures in their respective areas. These measures include the circulation of information on symptoms and the general spread of the disease and a requirement for breeders to monitor the condition of their cattle, he said.

May 6, 2021

Brazil: Yellow Fever

The Blumenau City Administration, in the Valei do Itajai, confirmed on April 28 the first positive case of yellow fever in the city in 2021. A 39-year-old man who is hospitalized in serious condition in the intensive care unit

According to the Santa Catarina Office of Epidemiological Surveillance, the patient had no record of vaccination in the Information System of the National Program of Immunizations. He is undergoing treatment in the Santa Isabel Hospital.

Up to the present, Santa Catarina has registered 6 other confirmed cases in 2021; 2 of the patients have died. The first fatal victim was a 34-year-old man, a resident of Aguas Mornas in Grande Florianopolis. The other lived in Sao Bonifacio in the same region and was 59 years old.

Spain: Q Fever

At least 5 cases of Q fever have been detected in the Baltzola caves by the Health Department of the Basque Government since last December. Climbers use the interior of these cavities to train throughout the year. The outbreak of this disease forced the closure of this natural space located in Dima and a popular destination for families and hikers on festive days.

The mayor of the town, Josu Gorospe, told DEIA April 30 that "on Friday morning we received an email from the Health Department of the Basque Government telling us to close the caves due to the appearance of Q fever cases." For this reason, signs have been placed at the 2 entrances to this karst complex, from the Indusi area, and the San Lorenzo hermitage.

This disease is an infection by a germ called Coxiella Burnetii that is found in some animals, usually cows, sheep, or goats. This organism is usually spread by the wind and inhaled reaching the lungs. Acute infection is characterized in humans by fever, headache, and muscle pain, accompanied by a lung infection and liver involvement.

Spain: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

The Junta de Castilla y Leon, through the General Directorate of Public Health and its Epidemiology Service, has confirmed a case of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) in the province of Salamanca.

Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is caused by a virus, the main transmission mechanism of which is the bite of the tick of the genus Hyalomma, although it can also be transmitted from person to person through contact with the patient's blood or fluids, which can occur especially in health personnel when they are not properly protected.

A 59-year-old man who, with symptoms compatible with CCHF, his occupation as a farmer, contact with animals, and recent tick bites, was investigated appropriately and found to have Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, confirmed by the 'Carlos III' Health Institute.

The patient has been hospitalized for several days in the Infectious Diseases Service in a room with the isolation measures provided in these cases and his clinical condition is stable.

April 30, 2021

United States: Measles

The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) has confirmed the second case of measles in a Fairfield County child. The child did not attend school while infectious. The child is a household contact of the child who contracted the first case of measles announced on April 9. DPH is collaborating with local partners to identify contacts and implement appropriate control measures. These are the first cases of measles in Connecticut since 2019.

Measles is a highly contagious disease that can spread quickly among unvaccinated people. However, the majority of people exposed to measles are not at risk of developing the disease, since most people have either been vaccinated or have had measles in the past before vaccination became routine.

"The single best way to protect yourself and your children from measles is to be vaccinated," said DPH Acting Commissioner Dr. Deidre Gifford. "One dose of measles vaccine is about 93% effective, while 2 doses are about 97% effective. We must ensure that we continue to protect our children from vaccine-preventable illnesses through on-time vaccination."

China: Avian Influenza

According to media news articles on April 22, Hong Kong's Center for Health Protection (CHP) reported in their avian influenza update a human case of avian influenza A (H9N2). The case is a 3-year-old boy.

In most human cases of H9N2 avian influenza, the associated disease symptoms have been mild, and there has been no evidence of human-to-human transmission.

The first case was in a 10-year-old boy from Sanming, Fujian Province. The second case is a 2-year-old female from Shiyan, Hubei Province. Both cases had mild illnesses and have recovered. The case from Hubei Province had exposure to backyard poultry, while no history of exposure was reported for the case from Fujian Province. So far, no family clusters have been reported.

To date, 12 cases of avian influenza A(H9N2) have been reported in the Western Pacific Region in 2021, and a total of 53 cases of human infection with avian influenza A(H9N2) have been reported in the Western Pacific Region since December 2015, primarily from China.

Malaysia: African Swine Fever

Ten Sabah districts have been found with African swine fever (ASF) so far, with the latest case detected in the Nabawan district (Interior Division). Other districts previously affected include Pitas, Kota Marudu, Beluran, Telupid, Kinabatangan, Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Tawau, and Tongod.

Deputy chief minister Jeffrey Kitingan said that at least one ASF case had been reported in Nabawan thus far.

Kitingan, who is also state agriculture and fisheries minister, said that as of April 18, a total of 169 wild bearded pigs had been confirmed positive for ASF.

"In addition, we have culled 398 backyards (domesticated) pigs while 535 others have died because of the disease," he said.

"The department (of veterinary services) has conducted 234 awareness campaigns in 14 districts, not only to educate the public about the disease but also to highlight the government's efforts to keep it from spreading to other districts. Although Sandakan has been declared an ASF outbreak district, the disease has not spread to the district's main pork production farms."

April 22,2021

Madagascar: Rift Valley Fever

Rift Valley fever is decimating the herds in Mananjary. Nearly 500 humped cattle have died in a few weeks. The farmers of the herds are at a loss. They have lost, in a blink of an eye, their zebus, who represent their wealth.

This acute hemorrhagic viral disease kills the zebus early every day in this district, "this morning 3 zebus have died. Yesterday we counted 7 in different enclosures, and at the slaughterhouse," said Dr. Moez Tajdin, the veterinarian from Mananjary.

This viral disease has decimated 425 zebus in this district since the end of March that marked the start of the disease according to a report from the local veterinary services. In Fokontany of Ambalamainty, commune of Anosiparihy, each enclosure has counted 8 dead zebus a day. These figures have lessened by 2 in Fokontany, for the moment, added the source. Teams from the Mananjary Veterinary Services have been mobilized to deal with the epidemic. "We are visiting each commune to establish a plan of prevention," said the veterinarian. The zebus are not the only victim; 2 ewes have aborted.

Apart from the treatment of ill animals, the authorities of Mananjary are instructing herders to separate their ill animals from the fit and well ones and to forbid the movement of ill animals.

Nigeria: Cholera

At least 50 people have died in a suspected cholera outbreak in 2021 in Nigeria, local health authorities have confirmed. Some 8 states across the country had reported the suspected cholera outbreak, according to the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC).

"As of March 28, a total of 1,746 suspected cases including 50 deaths with a case fatality rate that is 2.9% have been reported," said Chikwe Ihekweazu, head of the NCDC.

Taiwan: Lumpy Skin Disease

Beef cattle infected with lumpy skin disease (LSD) were found on a farm in New Taipei's Linkou District on April 15, the first time in Taiwan proper, according to the Council of Agriculture (COA).

Eight of 130 cows raised on the farm were discovered to have fever and nodules on their skin by New Taipei animal protection personnel during an inspection conducted on the farm the previous day.

PCR tests by the COA's Animal Health Research Institute using blood samples taken from 3 of the 8 cows showed that they had contracted the disease caused by a Capripox virus. The 8 cows were culled, cremated, and buried on the spot, with restrictions imposed on movements near the farm.

Lumpy skin disease is an infectious, eruptive, fatal disease of cattle characterized by nodules on the skin and other parts of the body. Secondary bacterial infection often aggravates the condition.

South Africa: Newcastle Disease

Birds reportedly falling out of the sky and found dead in parts of the Eastern Cape have died of Avian Paramyxovirus and Newcastle diseases.

The Eastern Cape Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform confirmed the test results on April 13.

Hundreds of bird deaths have been reported in the Buffalo City Municipality since March, which prompted Neville's Snake and Reptile Rescue to collect dead birds for testing at the SPCA. Wild birds found mysteriously dying in Gqeberha were also handed to state veterinarians for testing.

Testing and investigation included tracing of birds, collecting and conducting post mortems to identify the cause of bird deaths. Samples collected were sent to the Onderstepoort Veterinary Research (OVR) Laboratory for analysis.

On April 7, test results came back indicating the birds were positive for avian paramyxovirus or Newcastle disease.

United States: Swine Influenza

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported human infection with a novel influenza A virus in a Wisconsin child. The patient, a child less than 18 years of age, was infected with an influenza A(H1N1) variant (A(H1N1)v) virus.

According to the CDC's FluView report, the child was not hospitalized and has completely recovered from their illness. Investigation into the source of the infection revealed that the patient had direct contact with swine.

No human-to-human transmission has been identified in association with this patient.

This is the first influenza A(H1N1)v virus infection detected in the United States occurring in 2021 and the 3rd novel influenza A virus infection -- one A(H3N2)v and 2 A(H1N1)v viruses -- occurring during the 2020-2021 season.

United States: Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease

The USDA Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory has confirmed rabbit hemorrhagic disease (RHD) in a feral domestic rabbit collected in La Pine, Oregon. While the virus is highly contagious among rabbit populations and can spread through contact with infected rabbits, it poses no human health risk. The virus is only known to infect rabbits and hares.

This confirmation comes a few weeks after the same virus, RHDV2, was found in a feral domestic rabbit found dead in Milwaukie, a suburb of Portland.

RHD is a viral disease that causes sudden death in rabbits. It is resistant to extreme temperatures and can survive in the environment for months under certain conditions. The virus spreads through direct contact between infected and susceptible live rabbits or exposure to contaminated materials (carcasses, pelts, food, water, forage, etc.). Birds, rodents, flies, predators, and scavengers can spread this virus via their feet, fur/feathers, or feces without becoming infected themselves. People can spread the virus indirectly by carrying it on their clothing, hands, and shoes.

United States: Hantavirus

Health officials are reporting the Navajo Nation's first case this year of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, a rare but potentially fatal disease spread by infected rodent droppings.

The tribal health department said the case was confirmed in McKinley County in northwestern New Mexico, but it wasn't known how the person contracted hantavirus.

Hantavirus typically is reported in spring and summer, often due to exposures that occur when people are near mouse droppings in homes, sheds, or poorly ventilated areas.

Syria: Foot and Mouth Disease

The Director of Agriculture in Latakia, Munther Khairbek, confirmed to Al-Watan that there are suspected foci of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) among herds of goats in Ma'areen village. He indicated that the lesions are mild to moderate and the deaths are limited to several newborns in a herd ranging between 500 and 700 heads.

Khairbek added that after receiving several complaints regarding deaths from herds of goats in the aforementioned village, a technical team was assigned that included the assistant director of agriculture, the head of the animal health department, the assistant head of the department of Jableh, and the head of the animal health center in Jableh to see the herd and take the necessary measures immediately.

The Director of Agriculture pointed out that according to the discovery, it was found that most of the herds of the village suffer from the presence of suspected foci of FMD, indicating that the herd is jointly grazing the pastures available in the village and most of the cases are accompanied by high temperatures, lameness, lack of appetite, and frothy salivation, and only 2 deaths of neonates were seen.

April 16, 2021

United States: Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has received test results confirming that rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus 2 (RHDV2) was diagnosed in a wild black-tailed jackrabbit in Cottle County. This marks the first confirmed cases of RHDV2 in a wild rabbit in Texas in 2021 and follows the discovery of the disease in domestic rabbits in Tom Green County, which was announced in a recent Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) news release. This is also the first discovery of the disease in a domestic rabbit of 2021.

Rabbit hemorrhagic disease (RHD) is a highly contagious viral disease that can affect both domestic and wild rabbit species, including hares, jackrabbits, and cottontails. This disease is nearly always fatal and primarily affects adult rabbits. The viral agent, rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV), is a calicivirus with 2 strains, RHDV1 and RHDV2, both being reported in North America in recent years. RHDV appears only to affect rabbit species (lagomorphs). It is not known to affect humans, livestock, or pets other than rabbits. However, pets should not be allowed to consume dead animal carcasses.

TPWD has confirmed RHDV2 in the wild rabbit population of Brewster, Cottle, Culberson, El Paso, Gaines, Hale, Hockley, Hudspeth, Jeff Davis, Lubbock, Pecos, Presidio, Randall, Terrell, and Ward counties. If sick or dead wild rabbits are noticed, a local TPWD wildlife biologist should be contacted. Learn more about RHDV2 in wild rabbits on the RHD page of the TPWD website.

Often the only clinical sign is sudden death. In less acute cases, clinical signs in rabbits have included the following: dullness/apathy, not eating, bleeding from the nose and eyes, or watery, congested eyes. Some may also exhibit neurological signs such as incoordination, excitement, or seizure-like episodes.

United States; Hantavirus

The Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) has confirmed that an adult man from Richland County has been diagnosed with hantavirus.

The Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) sent out the following:

The Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) has confirmed that an adult male from Richland County has been diagnosed with hantavirus infection.

The individual acquired the illness while working out of state where there was an occupational exposure to mice. The individual was hospitalized but is now in the process of recovering at home.

DPHHS and local public health agencies remind Montanans and visitors to the state to be aware of the risk of hantavirus and to take precautions to avoid exposure to rodents, their droppings, and nests. This is Montana's first hantavirus case in 2021 and is the state's 45th case since it was identified in the state in 1993. Previously, the most recently reported case was in 2018.

India: Avian Influenza

With the second wave of avian influenza killing at least 110 migratory birds over the past 2 weeks at Pong Lake in Kangra district, Himachal Forest Department on Wednesday [7 Apr 2021] issued an alert in the state and directed all divisional forest officers to maintain active surveillance in their jurisdiction.

Another 11 carcasses of migratory birds were found at Pong Lake on April 7, taking the toll to 110 at the wetland due to bird flu. The H5N8 virus strain has been confirmed in the second wave of the outbreak in the hill state.

The deaths have been reported in 2 migratory species namely bar-headed geese and greylag geese at Pong.

At least 5,006 migratory birds had died until February in the first wave of avian influenza- H5N1 that had hit Pong wetland.

The affected birds display symptoms such as tremors, diarrhea, head tilt, and paralysis. The disease spreads quickly causing paralysis and staggering.

Laos: Avian Influenza

The World Health Organization (WHO) reports the first human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) virus infection has been reported in Laos.

A 5-year-old boy from Luang Prabang province in northern Laos developed symptoms on Feb. 28, was hospitalized, and tested positive for A(H5N6) on March 8. The boy recovered. He had exposure to poultry, and the poultry tested positive for H5N6. None of the contacts at home or in the hospital had the disease.

This is the first avian influenza A(H5N6) case reported to WHO from Laos PDR. To date, a total of 31 laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection with influenza A(H5N6) virus have been reported (30 in China and 1 in Laos).

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 includes eye infection (conjunctivitis), flu-like symptoms (e.g. fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches), or severe respiratory illness (e.g. chest infection). The incubation period ranges from 7 to 10 days.

India: Foot and Mouth Disease

A large number of Mithun's have been affected by FMD (foot and mouth disease) in various parts of Arunachal Pradesh, and a few have died, said official sources on April 13.

Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Department Deputy director Dr. Taba Heli, a top Mithun expert in the North-Eastern region, reported that the disease has taken a severe form in the entire Siang belt, particularly in East Siang, West Siang, and Upper Siang districts.

Though the number of deaths is yet to be known, the disease has spread in scattered areas of Papum Pare district also. The Department has allocated district funds for procurement of medicines to take all possible steps to contain the disease, he said. Mithun deaths have been reported also from Itanagar and Jullang area.

Brazil: Yellow Fever

The Directorate of Epidemiological Surveillance of Santa Catarina (DIVE/SC) reports that the first death from yellow fever in Santa Catarina was confirmed this year. The 34-year-old man was a resident of Aguas Mornas, in Greater Florianopolis. The patient did not have a vaccine record in the Information System of the National Immunization Program (SIPNI).

Another three human cases of yellow fever have already been confirmed in the state this year. The first case, recorded in January 2021, was a 40-year-old resident of Taio, in the Alto Vale do Itajai region. The second was confirmed in March 2021, a 62-year-old man, resident of Aguas Mornas, in Greater Florianopolis. The third was a 46-year-old man, a resident of the municipality of Anitapolis, also in Greater Florianopolis.

DIVE/SC is still awaiting the results of laboratory tests of other suspected cases, notified by the municipalities of Lages and Sao Bonifacio.

Concerning epizootics, the state has already received notification of 430 dead or sick non-human primates, with 111 confirmed for yellow fever. Another 33 epidemics (death or illness of monkeys) are still under investigation to determine the cause of death.

India: African Swine Fever

A laboratory test has confirmed that African swine fever (ASF) was the main cause of death of nearly 700 pigs in 3 Mizoram districts, an official of the state's animal husbandry and the veterinary department said April 13. However, a formal declaration from the concerned authority is awaited, he said.

Joint director (livestock health) Dr. Lalhmingthanga said that samples were sent to the National Institute of High-Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD) in Bhopal for a confirmatory test.

A confirmation is required from NIHSAD, and the government of India will eventually notify the swine fever (if it is ASF) as per World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) norms because it affects the international trade, he said.

According to him, at least 694 pigs have died of the virus since March 21, when the first death was reported at Lungsen village in south Mizoram's Lunglei district near the Bangladesh border.

He said that the state government has already declared 2 villages, Lungsen and Zawlnuam in Mamit district, which shares a border with Tripura; one locality in Lunglei town, Electric Veng; and 2 localities in Aizaw Edenthar Veng and Arm Veng, as "infected areas" to prevent the further spread of the virus to the neighboring villages.

April 9, 2021

Canada: Histoplasmosis

A rare pulmonary disease that is linked to bats has made Alberta home, according to new research led by provincial lab scientists.

Infectious disease experts at Alberta Precision Laboratories (APL) and the University of Alberta have confirmed that histoplasmosis -- a fungal infection transmitted through bat and bird droppings -- is now found in Alberta. Their study extends the known range of the disease much further northwest from its traditional home in the central USA and parts of southern Ontario and Quebec.

"We were surprised at how many cases were locally acquired, as histoplasmosis has always been considered a travel-related infection," said Dr. Tanis Dingle, APL's lead clinical microbiologist for fungal diseases and an assistant professor in the U of A's Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry. "We now know that it is living in Alberta and has the potential to infect people who come in contact with it."

The fungus can be present in contaminated dust particles, and when inhaled, patients experience respiratory infections with flu-like symptoms, including cough, fever, chills, and headache. Cases are typically related to individuals who have come in contact with a bat or bird droppings in old homes, churches, construction sites, and parks.

Among 45 confirmed cases of histoplasmosis in Alberta between 2011 and 2018, the researchers used epidemiologic data and genetic analysis to determine that 15 of the cases were locally acquired. The cases were primarily found in rural areas in central Alberta, including Sundre, Stettler, Stony Plain, and Spruce Grove.

Pakistan: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

A 25-year-old youngster, a resident of Sarjani Town Karachi, was brought to Jinnah Hospital on suspicion of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, commonly referred to as Congo fever, on March 31, Dunya News reported.

According to the Executive Director of Jinnah Hospital, Dr. Simi Jamali, the blood samples of the affected person were sent to the laboratory for testing and found positive for the disease.

This is the second case of the Congo virus this year in Karachi. Sources said that the affected person is associated with dairy farming.

Congo fever is a tick-borne viral disease that is mainly transferred to humans from pets. The symptoms of the viral disease may include fever, muscle pains, headache, vomiting, diarrhea, and bleeding into the skin. Complications may also include liver failure.

Republic of Korea: Japanese Encephalitis

On March 22, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) issued an advisory against Japanese encephalitis throughout the nation, as the first Culex tritaeniorhynchus -- the vector mosquitoes of Japanese encephalitis -- of the year were identified in Jeju.

Most people who are bitten by the vector mosquitoes carrying the Japanese encephalitis virus are asymptomatic. However, it requires caution, as it can lead to fatal, acute encephalitis in rare cases. There were 7 Japanese encephalitis patients in Korea last year, and one of them passed away.

The Culex tritaeniorhynchus mosquito is dark brown and has no distinct pattern. There is a wide white band in the middle of the mouth, and the length is about 4.5mm. The population of these mosquitoes starts to increase in southern regions such as Jeju, Busan, and Gyeongnam in June and is soon spread nationwide. They can be observed in Korea until the end of October.

KDCA recommended that children 12 months to 12 years of age be vaccinated. As for adults, vaccination is recommended for those who live near areas with high vector mosquito populations, such as rice paddies or pig farms or plan to travel to countries with a Japanese encephalitis epidemic.

United States: Rotavirus

New rotavirus not previously seen in horses is the culprit behind a rash of foal diarrhea cases seen during the first several months of the year at farms in Central Kentucky, according to researchers at the University of Kentucky's Maxwell H. Gluck Equine Research Center and the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

Because the virus is a different strain, it could not be detected using existing diagnostic tests for equine rotavirus A, and also the currently available commercial vaccine does not provide any protection.

"This is not a mutation. This is a whole different virus for horses," said Dr. David Horohov, chair of the Department of Veterinary Science and director of the Gluck Equine Research Center.

Veterinarians began seeing signs something was amiss during the first couple of months of the year.

Nigeria: Avian Influenza

The Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) said that Kano, Plateau, Bauchi, Gombe, Nasarawa, Kaduna and Niger states have reported confirmed human cases of avian influenza H5N1, also called "bird flu." The NCDC Director-General, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in Abuja, while providing highlights of the epidemiological situation and response activities in Nigeria.

NAN reports that avian influenza is a strain of the influenza virus that primarily infects birds but can also infect humans. This type of flu is most often contracted by contact with sick birds and can also be passed from person to person. It spreads by airborne respiratory droplets (coughs or sneezes).

Symptoms begin within 2 to 8 days and are like the common flu. Cough, fever, sore throat, muscle aches, headache, and shortness of breath may occur.

Ihekweazu said as of March 24, the 7 states reported outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) cases (H5N1) in poultries. "Health National Rapid Response Team (RRT) from NCDC and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture were deployed to Bauchi, Kano, and Plateau states.

April 2, 2021

United States: Strangles

A pony at a boarding facility in Martin County, Florida, was the 11th confirmed equine strangles case reported in Florida so far this year. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services reported a confirmed case of equine strangles at a boarding facility in Martin County.

A 6-year-old pony had an onset of clinical signs on March 19, including swollen lymph nodes. The pony was confirmed positive on March 23. The unvaccinated pony is affected and alive.

A total of 21 other horses on the property are considered exposed to equine strangles.

Nigeria: Meningitis

One student has died, while more than 30 others were hospitalized from suspected meningitis that hit Government Girls Secondary School (GGSS) Sokoto.

Confirming the incident, Sokoto State Director of Public Health, Dr. Abdulrahaman Dantsoho, said they admitted, treated, and discharged 30 students of the school. He, however, said no student died other than the one reported dead before the issue reached them. According to Abdulrahaman, they have gone to collect samples, including their food, water, and every other relevant specimen to ascertain the cause and nature of the ailment.

Sources within the school located within the Mabera axis of the Sokoto metropolis said the ailment might not be far from meningitis, as students showed symptoms related to it. The school's population reportedly increased tremendously by the sudden redeployment of students from security-prone areas to join them.

Spain: Q Fever

At least 3 cases of Q fever have been confirmed among workers at the Biological Mechanical Treatment (TMB) plant located in the Bilbao area of Artigas. Two of the 3 affected have been hospitalized for several days at Galdakao and Cruces Hospitals, and a 4th employee is waiting for their infection to be confirmed, according to worker sources.

The Occupational Health and Safety Committee met on March 25 with the company to explain the situation without any decision being made at the moment. Union sources said they expect a visit from Osalan [the Basque Institute for Occupational Safety and Health] inspectors to the TMB plant shortly in light of the cases detected.

The new presence of Q fever among TMB employees follows a severe outbreak in 2014, which affected dozens of workers, forcing the plant to close until its complete disinfection.

Q fever is caused by the obligate intracellular pathogen, Coxiella burnetii. The disease is usually transmitted to people through either infected milk or through aerosols. This disease is found on most continents with the reported incidence probably much lower than the actual because so many cases are so mild. Animal reservoirs of C. burnetii include sheep, cattle, goats, dogs, and cats. In areas where these animals are present, Q fever affects veterinarians, meatpacking workers, and farmers. Q fever is also considered a potential agent of bioterrorism.

Cambodia: Avian Influenza

The death of birds recently discovered in Tuolporn Taley Boeung Sne protected area in Prey Veng province's Ba Phnom district as a result of bird flu caused by influenza A virus subtype H5N1 (A/H5N1), officials confirmed.

Authorities have taken measures to stop the spread of infections but stopped short of ordering an evacuation of residents.

In a letter addressed to Minister of Environment Say Sam Al, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Veng Sakhon said specialists from the General Department of Animal Health and Production had tested the carcasses of 5 Asian Openbills from the district's Theay commune and determined that the cause of death was bird flu A/H5N1.

Sakhon called on relevant authorities to prevent it from spreading to other animals by taking a number of measures including destroying carcasses and bird products suspected of being infected in the outbreak area.

Authorities have been instructed to act on veterinary advice and temporarily suspend the import and export of birds within a 3 km radius of the affected area. The area would be monitored and checked by authorities and research would determine the source of the disease in 30 days.

United Kingdom: Avian Influenza

Poultry at a Staffordshire chicken farm is set to be culled after bird flu was confirmed at the site.

A 10-km control zone has been set up around the farm north of Uttoxeter after the case was confirmed on March 27.

Specific rules around the housing and movement of birds and eggs apply in this area, and records must be kept of anyone entering sites where poultry is kept.

Extra rules apply to areas within 3 km of the affected farm.

A government spokesman said all the poultry at the affected farm would be "humanely culled" after bird flu was confirmed in broiler chickens.

Anyone who owns chickens or turkeys, either commercially or as pets, has been required by law to keep birds indoors since December last year due to the risk of bird flu. However, that rule ended on March 31

Australia: Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease

Queensland Health recently urged parents to watch out for hand-foot-mouth disease (HFMD) following dozens of cases that have been identified in the Far North.

There have been more than 60 presentations of HFMD to Cairns Hospital's Emergency Department during the first 2 months of the year, including 9 patient admissions.

Tropical Public Health Services Cairns public health medical officer, Dr. Annie Preston-Thomas, said the team was aware of at least 15 day-care centers affected by the disease across the Cairns and Tablelands regions since early January.

"HFMD is a viral illness common in children," she said. "We are currently investigating why and how this virus is circulating in our region, but it is commonly linked to warm weather.

"There is a rising global incidence of HFMD, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region. We usually see a small number of cases during our hotter parts of the year, but this year [2021] has been especially severe."

Guinea: Ebola

Scientists and global health officials are investigating whether the current Ebola outbreak in Guinea may have been triggered by a person who was first infected with the virus during the Ebola epidemic in the region 5 years ago.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is carrying out further investigations into the individual who appears to have had the virus lay dormant in their body.

This would suggest infections may persist once people recover and have the potential to start a future outbreak.

International researchers, including a team at the University of Conakry in Guinea, sequenced the genome of 9 samples taken from people infected during the current outbreak and compared them against sequences from previous outbreaks to help identify the cause.

The results suggest the latest outbreak "is the result of the resurgence of a strain that previously circulated in the West African outbreak," the authors wrote in their analysis.

United States: Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease

A devastating disease sometimes referred to as "rabbit Ebola" has been detected for the first time in Idaho, with state officials warning domestic rabbit owners to take precautions.

Rabbit hemorrhagic disease, or RHD, is an incredibly deadly disease that's easily spread among rabbits. It isn't known to affect humans, livestock, or other species of pets.

Two dead jackrabbits near the Boise Airport were confirmed to have tested positive for RHD by the Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory [FADDL] in New York -- the first time it's been detected in the state.

Idaho state veterinarian Dr. Scott Leibsle said domestic rabbit owners need to take steps to protect their colonies, like elevating them off the ground if they're small enough.

"Minimize any type of interaction with wild rabbits, any opportunity for that to happen, and then, disinfect your boots or your coveralls, wash your hands before you interact with your rabbits before and afterward," Leibsle said.

United States: Encephalitis

Wildlife officials in California are worried about a strange ailment that appears to strip young bears of their fear of humans - and also is causing fatal brain inflammation. The mystery disease has shown up in Nevada and California, starting in 2014.

Dr. Brandon Munk, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Senior Wildlife Veterinarian spoke with CBS News about the mystery illness in bears: "Someone opened the trunk and it climbed in the trunk, and that is not normal behavior. And that's got to be a red flag, right? That's got to be a red flag that something is not right."

In California, there have already been 4 cases seen this year in several counties including El Dorado and Tulare, with the latest case turning up March 25, in a young bear in Humboldt County.

One case, in Pollock Pines, El Dorado County, exemplifies the condition most of the afflicted bears seem to have. According to CDFW, "a small, black bear showed up at a utility worksite. It was alone and possibly sick: lethargic and showing little fear of people. The bear was largely unfazed by attempts to shoo it away by yelling and clapping."

When CDFW went to investigate, "they encountered a situation becoming more common in the Tahoe Basin and elsewhere around the state. They found a bear too young to be out on its own, "dog-like" in its behavior, completely comfortable around people, picking up an apple to eat in front of them on the backyard patio. Physically and mentally, the bear just didn't seem quite right, walking oddly, dull and not responsive like a normal bear should be."

Philippines: African Swine Fever

The provincial task force on African swine fever [ASF] in Northern Samar is on alert for unusual swine deaths after reporting its 1st ASF case in Lope de Vega town March 30.

Provincial veterinarian Jose Luis Acompanado, vice chairman of the ASF task force in the province, said they would continue blood sample collection within 7 km of the affected area in Barangay Bonifacio.

"Active surveillance is crucial in determining the extent of ASF outbreak in Lope de Vega to prevent further spread of the virus," Acompanado said.

He said animal quarantine checkpoints were put up in strategic areas, adding that disinfection of hog farms would continue.

Authorities said 200 pigs within the 500-meter radius of the first confirmed case would be culled.

Northern Samar is the second province in Eastern Visayas affected by ASF.

March 26, 2021

Madagascar: Plague

Since Jan. 1, at least 21 confirmed cases of bubonic plague have been confirmed in Madagascar; 8 of these cases were reported since March 1. Since the start of the year, 37 suspected cases have been reported, affecting multiple regions. Roughly 9 deaths have been associated with this disease activity.

Plague is endemic to Madagascar, where 200-700 cases are reported each year, primarily the bubonic form. The risk of plague spreading to humans is elevated in Madagascar, where the fleas that transmit the disease are highly resistant to insecticide. The poor state of Madagascar's public health system and limited access to healthcare in rural areas may also facilitate the spread of the disease.

Plague is caused by a bacterium that is usually transmitted through the bite of an infected flea. However, an infection can also occur through direct contact with tissues or fluids from infected animals, such as a scratch or bite. Bubonic plague occurs when the bacteria infect a person's lymph nodes. This form of plague is not easily transmissible from person to person.

However, when the bacteria spread through the bloodstream to the lungs, pneumonic plague can transmit directly from person to person via respiratory droplets containing the plague bacteria. Symptoms of plague generally develop 1-7 days after exposure. All forms of plague cause nondescript symptoms, such as fever, chills, and extreme weakness. Symptoms of bubonic plague also include swollen, tender, and painful lymph nodes and symptoms of pneumonic plague include pneumonia with shortness of breath, chest pain, and cough. 

Malaysia: African Swine Fever

The African swine fever (ASF) virus has now spread widely among the vulnerable Bornean bearded pigs with at least 128 confirmed deaths.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan said March 17 the government fears for the survival of the species, especially because the population of the Bornean bearded pigs is already declining.

"I am concerned the ASF will further decrease their population at a much faster rate," he said.

Therefore, he said he has directed the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) to convene an urgent steering committee meeting with the relevant departments and agencies to coordinate efforts to control and eradicate ASF in Sabah.

The first meeting, chaired by DVS Director Dr. Peter Lee, was held on March16 and was attended by representatives from the State Attorney General Office, Sabah Wildlife Department, Sabah Forestry Department, Drainage and Irrigation Department, Community Development Leader Unit, Information Department, Local Government and Housing Ministry, and the police.

Poland: African Swine Fever

Poland, for the 1st time this year, confirmed an outbreak of African swine fever (ASF) in domestic pigs.

The Veterinary Authority confirmed the outbreak on a farm in the Swiebodzin district of the Lubusz Voivodeship, just about 60 km from the German-Polish border. The direct distance to Frankfurt an der Oder is about 80 km. A breeding sow herd with almost 16,000 animals is affected. This is the second largest outbreak since ASF was detected in Poland in 2014. According to media reports, there is concern that the disease could have reached other farms via piglets.

Meanwhile, ASF continues to rage unabated in the Polish wild boar population. According to the official information, a total of 86 new finds with a total of 163 animals were recorded in the past week. From a German point of view, the problem is that 60 of the most recently confirmed carcass finds are from Lebus, which is close to the border. The number of infected wild boar has risen to a total of 748 confirmed cases since the beginning of 2021.

China: Avian Influenza

Hong Kong health officials are monitoring a human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) in Guangxi in southern China. The case involved a 50-year-old man living in Hechi in Guangxi. He developed symptoms on Feb. 16 and was admitted for treatment due to severe pneumonia. The patient died on March 2.

Since 2014, 30 human cases of avian influenza A(H5N6) have been reported by China mainland health authorities.

Avian influenza is caused by those influenza viruses that mainly affect birds and poultry, such as chickens or ducks. The clinical presentation of avian influenza in humans includes eye infection (conjunctivitis), flu-like symptoms (such as fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches), or severe respiratory illness (such as chest infection). The incubation period ranges from 7 to 10 days.

The more virulent forms can result in respiratory failure, multi-organ failure, and even death. People mainly become infected with avian influenza viruses through contact with infected birds and poultry (live or dead) or their droppings, or contact with contaminated environments (such as wet markets and live poultry markets). Human-to-human transmission is inefficient.

People in close contact with poultry are more susceptible to contracting avian influenza. The elderly, children, and people with chronic illness have a higher risk of developing complications such as bronchitis and chest infection.

March 19,2021

United States: Canine Distemper

Six raccoons picked up by Arlington County Animal Control in North Arlington, Va., in recent weeks have tested positive for canine distemper, the county said March 11.

Five of the raccoons were removed from various neighborhoods in North Arlington over a 3-week period after showing neurological signs and symptoms, according to Animal Welfare League of Arlington spokeswoman Chelsea Jones. Those raccoons were euthanized due to their condition. The sixth raccoon tested was found dead in the same area with the cause of death unknown.

Distemper is a viral disease that is present in wildlife populations at varying levels. Raccoons are especially susceptible to canine distemper, as well as foxes, coyotes, skunks, and unvaccinated dogs. Distemper does not affect humans.

No people or pets had contact with the six raccoons that were all confirmed positive for canine distemper, Jones said in an email.

Mauritius: Foot and Mouth Disease

The veterinary service of the Ministry of Agro-Industry was notified of a suspected case of foot and mouth disease [FMD] in Rodrigues on March 10 by the Agriculture Commission.

Samples taken for analysis will be sent to the ANSES laboratory in France, thanks to the support and logistical facilitation of the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC).

The International Organization of Epizootics (OIE) has also been notified of this suspected case. As a precautionary measure, no transport of livestock (cattle, sheep, goats, pigs) from Rodrigues to Mauritius will be authorized until further notice.

Brazil: Yellow Fever

The DIVE (Directorate of Epidemiological Surveillance) March 10 registered 17 more monkey deaths from yellow fever in Santa Caterina.

The deaths occurred in the municipalities of Sao Martinho, Campo Belo do Sul, Sao Jose do Cerrito and Lages. In total, the state has counted 56 dead monkeys from the disease in 2021.

The monkeys live in the same habitat as the mosquitoes that transmit yellow fever viruses and because of this are the first victims of the disease, explained a note issued by DIVA.

The death of the animals' signals where the virus is circulating. Thus, the population needs to report to the Municipal Health Department when they find a dead or sick monkey.

United States: Legionellosis

The New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) is investigating a cluster of Legionnaires' disease cases in Union County. The Department is aware of 14 confirmed cases of Legionnaires' disease, including one death, among individuals who live in or spend time in the county.

The cases were reported to the Department during February. The Department is working with the local health departments in Union County to investigate this cluster. The individual who died was a male resident of Union County in his late 60s.

"This is a continuing investigation. The risk to anyone who lives in Union County is very small," said New Jersey Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. "Out of an abundance of caution, the Department recommends that individuals who live in Union County who become ill with pneumonia-like/respiratory symptoms, such as fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, muscle aches, and headache visit their healthcare provider."

Most healthy people exposed to Legionella do not develop Legionnaires' disease. People over the age of 50, especially those who smoke cigarettes, or those with certain medical conditions, including weakened immune systems, chronic lung disease, or other chronic health conditions, are at increased risk for Legionnaires' disease.

Libya: Leishmaniasis

The Libya Health Ministry says that the country has seen some 5,000 cases of the parasitic disease leishmaniasis in the past six months, according to a media account.

"There are currently 5,000 patients who are being treated," said Ahmad al-Qarari, who heads the center for disease control at the health ministry of Libya's UN-backed unity government.

United States: Equine Herpesvirus

The discovery of equine herpesvirus EHV-1 at Laurel Park has forced travel restrictions on horses at Pimlico Race Course and Laurel Park.

"Effective immediately: No horses are allowed to ship out of Laurel or Pimlico, with the exception of Pimlico horses entered to run at Laurel," the Maryland Jockey Club tweeted March 9.

The Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association hosted a Zoom Q&A session to discuss the situation with Maryland Department of Agriculture State Veterinarian Dr. Michael Odian.

"Equine herpesvirus 1 is a contagious virus that can cause neurological disease, respiratory disease, newborn death and abortion in horses," according to the University of Minnesota Extension.

March 11, 2021

Pakistan: Crimean Congo Hemorrhagic Fever

A patient at Karachi’s Jinnah Hospital has been diagnosed with Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. "A patient infected with Congo fever virus has been admitted at the Jinnah Hospital," Dr. Seemi Jamali said March 1. It is the first patient with the Congo virus reported this year.

"The patient has been a cowherd and resident of Bilawal Chowrangi in Karachi," Dr. Jamali said.

The patient was brought to Jinnah Hospital over symptoms of Congo fever. The hospital confirmed the Congo virus in the patient after medical test reports. A Congo virus alert had been issued last year for the metropolis, stipulating precautionary instructions for all those people who were visiting cattle farms. The alert was issued by the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation to hospitals, directing them to adopt special precautions for a Congo-affected patient. It had further asked hospitals to establish special wards for Congo patients, and run awareness campaigns about the virus.

The disease is caused when a tick attaches itself to the skin of infected cattle and when that infected tick or animal comes in contact with people, the highly contagious virus is transmitted into the human body and the person falls ill. The initial symptoms of Congo fever included headache, high fever, rashes, back pain, joint pain, stomach pain, and vomiting.

Congo: Ebola

Since the last brief Feb. 23, 11 new confirmed cases, 1 new death, and 2 new recoveries of Ebola have been reported in Nzerekore, Guinea, and North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). This represents a 47% increase in the total number of cases reported this week compared to the last brief. Cumulatively, 28 EVD cases, 11 deaths (CFR: 39%), and [4] recoveries have been reported from DRC (11 cases; 4 deaths; 2 recoveries) and Guinea (17; [7]; 2). Seven healthcare workers are among the confirmed cases: DRC (2) and Guinea (5).

Bhutan: Sheep Pox and Goat Pox

Wild animals within the Jigme Khesar Strict Nature Reservoir in Gakiling and Sangbaykha gewogs, Haa [District] have succumbed to a suspected outbreak of the viral infection capripox.

The first case was detected in November. According to the rescue focal officer, Kinley Tenzin, an observed symptom is the development of skin lesions and gradual peeling off.

So far, 3 Himalayan serows, one wild boar, and a barking deer were reported dead from the disease. "One animal was found sick and died within a night. Others were found dead by the officials," he said.

Other symptoms of capripox are characterized by fever, generalized papules or nodules, vesicles, and internal lesions. Infected animals eventually die. The disease is caused by strains of capripoxvirus.

Kinley Tenzin said that there was no history of such outbreaks in the area but was earlier reported at Chari in Thimphu.

Australia: Box jellyfish death

An Australian teenager has died after a suspected box jellyfish sting, authorities said March 4 in a rare case believed to be the country's first such death in 15 years.

Health officials said the 17-year-old was stung while swimming at Bamaga, a remote community on the tip of Cape York in Australia's far north, on Feb. 22. He was airlifted to a hospital where he died on March 1, according to police.

The Australian box jellyfish, or Chironex Fleckeri, is among the world's most venomous creatures. It is found primarily in Australia's tropical northern waters, where swimmers are warned to keep out of the ocean or wear a full-body protective swimsuit during the summer "stinger season."

Marine biologist Lisa-Ann Gershwin said it was Australia's first recorded box jellyfish death since 2006. "Unfortunately, the previous fatality also occurred in Bamaga," she told public broadcaster ABC. Gershwin said deaths were avoidable, but people living far from cities were most vulnerable.

United States: Equine Herpesvirus

A mare in Marion, Florida, has tested positive for the neurological strain of equine herpesvirus, EHV-1, raising concerns, a very aggressive strain of the virus currently circulating in Europe may eventually make its way to the United States.

EHV-1 most often causes mild-to-moderate respiratory illness (rhino-pneumonitis), but the infection occasionally leads to the life-threatening neurologic disease equine herpesvirus myeloencephalopathy (EHM), which occurs when EHV-1 attacks the cells lining the central nervous system, damaging blood vessels serving the brain and spinal cord. The mechanisms through which EHV-1 produces neurologic disease are not yet understood.

There is no vaccine that specifically protects against EHM, so biosecurity is a crucial part of prevention. EHV-1 spreads from horse to horse through nasal discharge or aerosol droplets. Humans can spread the virus via contaminated hands, clothing, and equipment.

Algeria: Avian Influenza

On March 5, a new focus of bird flu virus was discovered in Batna Wilaya, in the east of the country.

The Agriculture Directorate of Batna State stated that "a focus of avian influenza virus has been confirmed in the Seriana region in the state."

The directorate demanded that poultry keepers in the region attend a meeting to be held on March 7 in the Seriana region to take advantage of instructions and directives to avoid the spread of infection. According to the statement, these measures aim to preserve the livestock and economic resources of poultry farmers. The statement did not mention additional details about the extent of the virus spread or the number of dead poultry.

Last month, Algeria declared a state of high alert after the World Organization for Animal Health announced the registration of a bird flu focus in the eastern state of Oum El Bouaghi, which was spotted at the end of last January.

Spain: Equine Herpesvirus

Three more horse deaths have put the toll of the equine herpesvirus (EHV-1) outbreak in Europe at 9, with all but 2 occurring in Spain. Two horses have died in Germany, 2 in Barcelona, and 5 in Valencia, the center of the outbreak. There are now 6 countries with confirmed cases: Spain, Germany, Belgium, France, Sweden, and Qatar. There is a case in the US, but it is not linked with the outbreak in Europe.

Late on March 5, the FEI, horse sport's world governing body, suspended the Sunshine Tour in Vejer de la Frontera in Spain after a second horse at the venue had been put into isolation after developing mild neurological signs and a slightly elevated temperature.

The first horse to show symptoms arrived directly from her home stables in Belgium and was fit and healthy with no symptoms. She competed for the first 2 weeks as normal and on the first day of competition on Feb. 22.

Malaysia: African swine fever

The African swine fever (ASF) virus has now spread to other districts, infecting both domestic pigs and their cousins, the wild bearded pigs. In a statement in Kota Kinabalu on March 7, Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan said the virus was detected among domestic pigs in Kota Marudu and Pitas as well as wild bearded pigs in Lahad Datu, Sandakan, Kinabatangan, Beluran, and Telupid. "This includes the case of a dead wild bearded pig at a resort in the Kinabatangan district which went viral on social media last week," he said.

Fortunately, he said commercial pig farms in Tawau, Sandakan, Tenom, Papar, Tuaran, and Penampang that supply most of Sabah's pork products are still free of the ASF virus. "We must ensure these areas remain ASF-free so that the pork production for local consumption is not affected. Even though ASF does not infect humans, it is capable of causing great economic damage as well as disrupting the well-being of our society. Therefore, it is crucial for us to control and eliminate this disease," he said.

Brazil: Yellow Fever

In a little more than 15 days, the region has registered 40 dead monkeys in the cities of Santa Rosa de Lima, Rio Fortuna, Sao Martinho, Grao-Para, and Braco do Norte, with 24 in just one week.

Teams from regional Health Surveillance and the Zoonoses Surveillance Unit (UVZ), Tubarao Municipal Health Foundation (FMS), issued an alert about the possibility of yellow fever cases that could be causing the deaths of monkeys in municipalities of the region.

Several days ago, 8 dead monkeys were collected that were encountered in the Santa Rosa de Lima region, the results of which still have not been issued. However, the alert was made due to the increase in cases.

According to the biologist Sabrina Fernandes Cardoso of the State Health Secretariat, the first results of the test are expected at the beginning of next week. "It is worrisome because there is no apparent cause of death of these animals, with no signs of aggression or accident. In addition to this, the monkeys that were seen constantly by the residents have disappeared," she stated.

Vietnam: Lumpy Skin Disease

The lumpy skin disease [LSD] virus, which has been detected in cows and buffaloes in Vietnam since mid-October has continued spreading. To date, LSD had hit 163 communes in 65 districts of 18 cities and provinces in Vietnam, affecting 2200 cows and buffaloes with 300 culled.

By March 1, the disease had attacked roughly 1,000 cows and buffaloes in many districts of the Ha Tinh province and has tended to rise. The province is seeking the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for the import of 5,000 doses of vaccine for the disease.

Meanwhile, the disease has also appeared in the Nghi Loc Commune, situated in neighboring Nghe An. Initially, 6 cows of 4 households were diagnosed with the disease.

Lumpy skin disease virus is a double-stranded DNA virus. It is a member of the capripoxvirus genus of Poxviridae and is not infectious to humans. It is believed that arthropod vectors, direct contact, contaminated feed and water, and repeated use of needles on different animals can all spread the disease.

March 4, 2021

Lebanon: Foot and Mouth Disease

The National News Agency reported that after monitoring cases of FMD in the villages of the district, the Agricultural Services Center in the Municipalities Union of Bint Jbeil District, in cooperation with the Jihad Al-Bina Development Foundation, and in coordination with the Cattle Breeders Syndicate in the south, started a vaccination campaign against this disease for cows in the villages of the union.

To prevent the spread of disease among cows and in the interest of livestock, livestock keepers should adhere to the following guidelines: maintain cleanliness and periodic sterilization of farms, isolate the affected animal, and make sure before buying cows that they are free of contagious diseases.

India: Japanese Encephalitis

A child in Bihar's Muzaffarpur has been detected with symptoms of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) in Shrikrishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCK), and the pediatrics department has confirmed the case on Feb. 19. "Pediatrics department confirmed one case of AES in Muzaffarpur's SKMC Hospital," hospital superintendent Dr. BS Jha said. "We are prepared to deal with this case; we have arranged the medicines.”

In October 2020, a total of 77 children were admitted to SKMCH hospital with AES/Japanese encephalitis.

AES is a viral disease that causes flu-like symptoms such as high fever, vomiting, and, in extreme cases, brain dysfunction, seizure, and inflammation of the heart and kidney.

United States: Equine Herpesvirus

A deadly outbreak of a highly contagious virus that's often fatal in horses has struck an equestrian farm in western Quebec.

The neurological form of EHV-1, sometimes called equine herpesvirus, has already caused the deaths of 2 horses and infected nearly half of the other 39 animals housed in stables at the Luskville farm.

Staff at Venturing Hills, already under added strain due to the coronavirus pandemic, now have new anti-contagion precautions to manage. They've been working around the clock to care for the horses, which are either owned by the training facility or boarded there by their private owners.

The illness seemed to come out of nowhere.

On Feb. 3, Eddy, an otherwise healthy, young horse, began to stumble and lose strength. The neurological form of the equine virus had taken hold, and within hours, the animal had to be euthanized. Another horse died 11 days later.

Canada: Strangles

On Wednesday, the Atlantic Provinces Harness Racing Commission (APHRC) was informed of a new confirmed case of strangles in a Standardbred on Prince Edward Island.

This case is in a different barn from the stable has been under quarantine since early November. Testing of other horses in the newly impacted stable at Red Shores at the Charlottetown Driving Park is underway, and the stable has been quarantined. No other horses in this barn had shown any clinical signs for Streptococcus Equi except for the horse coming up positive.

The originally impacted barn has been following testing and treatment protocols established by the Atlantic Veterinary College. This has resulted in the majority of the horses in the stable being cleared. The remaining horses are undergoing testing and treatment protocols set forth by the attending veterinarians.

Strangles is a highly contagious and serious infection of horses and other equines caused by the bacterium S. Equi.

Russia: Avian Influenza

 Russia has registered the first case of a strain of bird flu virus named A(H5N8) being passed to humans from birds and has reported the matter to the World Health Organization (WHO), Anna Popova, head of consumer health watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, said Feb. 20.

Outbreaks of the H5N8 strain have been reported in Russia, Europe, China, the Middle East, and North Africa in recent months but so far only in poultry. Other strains -- H5N1, H7N9, and H9N2 -- have been known here to spread to humans.

Russia reported the case of human infection to the WHO "several days ago, just as we became certain of our results," Popova said on Rossiya 24 state TV. There was no sign yet of transmission between humans, she added.

Seven workers at a poultry plant in Russia's south had been infected with the H5N8 strain in an outbreak at the plant in December, Popova said, adding that the individuals involved felt fine now. "This situation did not develop further," she said.

In an email, WHO's European arm said it had been notified by Russia about a case of human infection with H5N8 and acknowledged that this would, if confirmed, be the first time the strain had infected people.

"Preliminary information indicates that the reported cases were workers exposed to bird flocks," the email said. "They were asymptomatic, and no onward human-to-human transmission was reported. We are in discussion with national authorities to gather more information and assess the public health impact of this event," the email added.

United States: Flu

On Jan. 13, a child under 18 years of age in Wisconsin developed the respiratory disease. A respiratory specimen was collected. Real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing conducted at the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene indicated a presumptive positive influenza A(H3N2) variant virus infection. The specimen was forwarded to the Influenza Division of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on 21 Jan 2021 for further testing.

CDC confirmed an influenza A (H3N2)v virus infection using RT-PCR and genome sequence analysis. An investigation into the source of the infection has been completed and revealed that the child lives on a farm with swine present. A sampling of the swine on the property for influenza virus has not yet been conducted but is planned. Five family members of the patient-reported respiratory illness during the investigation and were tested for influenza; all tested negative. The patient was prescribed antiviral treatment and was not hospitalized and has made a full recovery. No human-to-human transmission has been identified associated with this investigation.

Guinea: Ebola

Officials said 4 people have died from the hemorrhagic Ebola virus during a new outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, warning that people are resisting measures to contain the highly contagious disease.

Since the epidemic's resurgence this month, "we have already registered 6 Ebola cases. We have lost 4 infected people," [Eugene Nzanzu Salita], the provincial health minister in North Kivu province in the DRC's east, told AFP.

Salita said one person died on Feb. 19 and another on Feb. 20, while the 2 others died in early February. Two patients are receiving care at an Ebola treatment centre in Katwa near the major city of Butembo, he added.

Salita complained that the region's residents were not taking the new outbreak seriously enough. "Some families categorically refuse to have their homes disinfected or to hold dignified and safe funerals," the doctor said.

"People have not yet understood that Ebola has reappeared. Everything is not yet clear for them."

A vaccination drive was launched, but as with past outbreaks, people in the region doubt the existence of Ebola and reject measures aimed at checking its spread, including not to touch sick people and not to wash the dead.

India: Avian influenza

Bihar health authorities have sounded alert after pathogenic avian influenza [AI] (H5N8) viruses were detected in crows in the state.

Dozens of crows died in the state's West Champaran district in January, following which the animal husbandry department officials collected samples and sent them for testing at a laboratory in Kolkata.

"The report confirmed H5N8 strain of bird flu. We have sounded alert and stepped surveillance to check the spread of this virus," Sunil Kumar Thakur, district animal husbandry officer, West Champaran, told Down To Earth.

Thakur added that the virus is not "deadly" and suggested people consume chickens as usual without any fear: "People panic in the absence of proper information. I suggest them to consume chickens without nursing any fear."

He said the department had asked all block-level animal husbandry officials to promptly inform about the death of birds and collect samples for testing. "We are examining all poultry farms in the district," he said.

The state animal husbandry department issued a high alert in the areas and formed quick-response teams in case the situation deteriorates, said its Muzaffarpur-based regional director Manoj Das.

"It is destroyed at 80 deg C [176 deg F]," Das said, indicating cooked poultry meat or eggs were safe.

India: Hemorrhagic Septicemia

A 3-member team from the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) visited Karlapat Wildlife Sanctuary on Feb. 20 to ascertain the death of 6 elephants.

Sources said the Central team is on the same page with the Forest department about hemorrhagic septicemia (HS) being the cause and the measures are undertaken to prevent further outbreak though it has collected samples and would seek more detailed analysis.

Since there have been no more deaths, the department has reasons to believe the spread has been contained.

The officials reviewed the hemorrhagic septicemia vaccination drive to protect domestic cattle from the disease in villages. Sources said the team also assessed the steps taken by the Forest department to prevent the recurrence of such incidents in the future and collected samples from water bodies in the sanctuary.

The team conducted a review meeting in the evening and expressed satisfaction with the steps being taken for disinfection of water bodies, tracking of elephant herd, and vaccination of domestic cattle in the sanctuary.

Zimbabwe: Theileria

A new wave of theileriosis, also known as January disease, is killing hundreds of cattle in Masvingo Province, while a lot of deaths are not reported. The provincial veterinary services officer confirmed the epizootic and said the 552 cattle that have been reported dead since Jan. 1 are an understatement of the situation on the ground. However, he said that the government was intervening by availing 146 tons of tick grease; 96.6 tons have already been released to farmers. Awareness campaigns on the importance of dipping are operated; people are urged to collect tick grease for their livestock.

The new wave of the pandemic follows another devastating one last year that left the province's total herd drastically reduced.

Gutu [district] is the epicenter of the disease. Zaka, Bikita, Masvingo, and Chivi [districts] are also affected; Chiredzi and Mwenezi recorded the fewest deaths. Most cases are unrecorded due to COVID-19; it is believed more cattle have succumbed to tick-borne-related pathogens.

England: Strangles

A warning has been issued after a case of strangles disease - a highly contagious respiratory infection that kills scores of equines in the UK each year -- was reported in south Cumbria. The case is believed to be an isolated outbreak limited to the Furness area.

Strangles is one of the most common diseases diagnosed in horses worldwide. It is a highly contagious and debilitating disease that can affect any horse, on any yard, at any time.

Symptoms include a high temperature above 38.5°C; lethargy; reluctance to eat or drink; difficulty swallowing and a lowered head and neck; a cough; thick and discolored nasal discharge; and swelling of the glands under the jaw which may lead to abscesses.

The abscesses that cause the lymph nodes to swell can burst, discharging highly infectious, thick, creamy-yellow pus. In some cases the glands swell so much they restrict the airway -- hence the name strangles.

The chair of Ulverston District Equine Club is urging horse and pony owners to remain vigilant of the disease. "It's a contact disease which is always around," she said.

Kenya: Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

The first case of an extremely rare mad cow-like disease, which affects the nervous system and usually is fatal, has been reported in Kenya. The case of Sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (sCJD) referred to a major teaching hospital in Nairobi is the first to be reported in East Africa.

"We report the case of a 57-year-old male with a 3-week history of losing direction when driving home and visual hallucinations described as seeing rainbows," said the attending doctors.

While other variants have been suspected in the country, the doctors say it is the first time this extremely rare form called the Heidenhain variant is recorded in East Africa.

CJD is the human version of the mad cow disease called Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), first identified in a 1986 outbreak in the UK. During the outbreak, 180,000 cows were affected and since then it has been recorded in more than a dozen countries. At least 28 human deaths were reported in the UK outbreak, suspected to have been transmitted through consumption of contaminated beef.

However, the Kenya human case reported in the International Medical Case Reports Journal early this month is from an unknown cause.

Guinea: Ebola

The provincial minister of health in North Kivu, Dr. Eugene Nzanzu Salita, Monday in the town of Butembo, announced a seventh positive case for the Ebola virus. This is the daughter of the second case notified in the Biena health zone, in Lubero territory. This new case is being taken care of in the Katwa health zone.

"Currently, she is receiving care in the CTE (Ebola Treatment Center) in Katwa," Dr. Salita said.

He also affirms that the vaccination against Ebola "for people not yet vaccinated" has started.

In addition, the provincial minister of health in North Kivu denied rumors that an Ebola response team in charge of vaccination was attacked in the health zone of Biena (Lubero), last Sunday by drivers of motorcycle taxis.

"This is false. What is true is that the taxi drivers were in mourning. And you know here with us how we manifest during mourning. They were sympathizing because one of their own had passed away. And after that, we had vaccinated more than 62 people. So, to tell you that we were not attacked," he said.

February 25, 2021

Lebanon: Foot and Mouth Disease

The National News Agency reported that after monitoring cases of FMD in the villages of the district, the Agricultural Services Center in the Municipalities Union of Bint Jbeil District, in cooperation with the Jihad Al-Bina Development Foundation, and in coordination with the Cattle Breeders Syndicate in the south, started a vaccination campaign against this disease for cows in the villages of the union.

India: Japanese Encephalitis

A child in Bihar's Muzaffarpur has been detected with symptoms of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) in Shrikrishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCK), and the pediatrics department has confirmed the case on Feb. 19. "Pediatrics department confirmed one case of AES in Muzaffarpur's SKMC Hospital," hospital superintendent Dr. BS Jha said. "We are prepared to deal with this case; we have arranged the medicines.”

United States: Equine Herpesvirus

A deadly outbreak of a highly contagious virus that's often fatal in horses has struck an equestrian farm in western Quebec. The neurological form of EHV-1, sometimes called equine herpesvirus, has already caused the deaths of 2 horses and infected nearly half of the other 39 animals housed in stables at the Luskville farm.

Canada: Strangles

On Wednesday, the Atlantic Provinces Harness Racing Commission (APHRC) was informed of a new confirmed case of strangles in a Standardbred on Prince Edward Island. This case is in a different barn from the stable has been under quarantine since early November. Testing of other horses in the newly impacted stable at Red Shores at the Charlottetown Driving Park is underway, and the stable has been quarantined. No other horses in this barn had shown any clinical signs for Streptococcus Equi except for the horse coming up positive.

Russia: Avian Influenza

 Russia has registered the first case of a strain of bird flu virus named A(H5N8) being passed to humans from birds and has reported the matter to the World Health Organization (WHO), Anna Popova, head of consumer health watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, said Feb. 20. Outbreaks of the H5N8 strain have been reported in Russia, Europe, China, the Middle East, and North Africa in recent months but so far only in poultry. Other strains -- H5N1, H7N9, and H9N2 -- have been known here to spread to humans.

United States: Flu

On Jan. 13, a child under 18 years of age in Wisconsin developed the respiratory disease. A respiratory specimen was collected. Real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing conducted at the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene indicated a presumptive positive influenza A(H3N2) variant virus infection. The specimen was forwarded to the Influenza Division of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on 21 Jan 2021 for further testing.

Guinea: Ebola

Officials said 4 people have died from the hemorrhagic Ebola virus during a new outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, warning that people are resisting measures to contain the highly contagious disease. Since the epidemic's resurgence this month, "we have already registered 6 Ebola cases. We have lost 4 infected people," [Eugene Nzanzu Salita], the provincial health minister in North Kivu province in the DRC's east, told AFP.

India: Avian influenza

Bihar health authorities have sounded alert after pathogenic avian influenza [AI] (H5N8) viruses were detected in crows in the state. Dozens of crows died in the state's West Champaran district in January, following which the animal husbandry department officials collected samples and sent them for testing at a laboratory in Kolkata.

India: Hemorrhagic Septicemia

A 3-member team from the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) visited Karlapat Wildlife Sanctuary on Feb. 20 to ascertain the death of 6 elephants. Sources said the Central team is on the same page with the Forest department about hemorrhagic septicemia (HS) being the cause and the measures are undertaken to prevent further outbreak though it has collected samples and would seek more detailed analysis.

Zimbabwe: Theileria

A new wave of theileriosis, also known as January disease, is killing hundreds of cattle in Masvingo Province, while a lot of deaths are not reported. The provincial veterinary services officer confirmed the epizootic and said the 552 cattle that have been reported dead since Jan. 1 are an understatement of the situation on the ground. However, he said that the government was intervening by availing 146 tons of tick grease; 96.6 tons have already been released to farmers. Awareness campaigns on the importance of dipping are operated; people are urged to collect tick grease for their livestock.

England: Strangles

A warning has been issued after a case of strangles disease - a highly contagious respiratory infection that kills scores of equines in the UK each year -- was reported in south Cumbria. The case is believed to be an isolated outbreak limited to the Furness area. Strangles is one of the most common diseases diagnosed in horses worldwide. It is a highly contagious and debilitating disease that can affect any horse, on any yard, at any time.

Kenya: Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

The first case of an extremely rare mad cow-like disease, which affects the nervous system and usually is fatal, has been reported in Kenya. The case of Sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (sCJD) referred to a major teaching hospital in Nairobi is the first to be reported in East Africa.

Guinea: Ebola

The provincial minister of health in North Kivu, Dr. Eugene Nzanzu Salita, Monday in the town of Butembo, announced a seventh positive case for the Ebola virus. This is the daughter of the second case notified in the Biena health zone, in Lubero territory. This new case is being taken care of in the Katwa health zone.

February 18, 2021

Latvia: Avian Influenza

Laboratory tests have confirmed highly pathogenic avian influenza for 2 dead swans in Jurmala, Dzintaru Beach. This is the first case of avian influenza in Latvia, the Food and Veterinary Service (PVD) said.

The Ministry of Agriculture intends, on the basis of information provided by the PVD, to impose additional biosecurity measures for poultry keepers throughout the country, including ban of keeping poultry outdoors in order to prevent direct or indirect contact with wild birds.

The PVD calls on owners of birds not to let them outside or keep them in fenced structures before any restrictions are imposed, to avoid contact of poultry with wild birds, particularly water birds (swans, ducks), and refrain from purchasing poultry in other European countries during the winter and forthcoming spring months.

Poultry owners should notify the PVD immediately if signs of disease are observed in birds: significantly decreased intake of food and water, increased mortality.

Kenya: Rift Valley Fever

In a follow-up on the Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreak in Kenya, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports as of Feb. 4 that there are 32 total human cases reported, of which 14 are confirmed and 11 deaths.

RVF in humans has been reported in Isiolo and Mandera counties and in animals in Isiolo, Mandera, Murang'a, and Garissa counties.

The first case of suspected RVF was reported in late November 2020 following a sudden death of an adult male who was a herder. This was a case from Sericho ward in Garbatulla subcounty, Isiolo county.

Other deaths with symptoms such as fevers, joint pains, headache, and general malaise were also reported in Gafarsa and Erisaboru locations within Garbatulla subcounty as well as Korbesa in Merti subcounty.

A confirmed case of RVF in Madera county reported end of December has since died; he was involved in the slaughter of 4 sick camels. All the affected cases were males aged 13-70 years.

Congo: Ebola

The World Health Organization on Feb. 12 confirmed a third case of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as health officials race to vaccinate residents and contain the potential outbreak.

Earlier this week, the global health agency confirmed that a woman died of the disease in Butembo, a city in North Kivu province and an epicenter of a previous Ebola outbreak that was declared over in June. The WHO has since confirmed 2 more cases, including another person who has died, Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO's health emergencies program, said.

The number of people who might have been exposed to the virus has risen from over 70 on Feb. 8 to 182 as of Feb. 12, Ryan said. He added that all but 3 of those people have been contacted, and more than half of them were previously vaccinated against Ebola during prior outbreaks.

"We're seeing some benefits of the previous vaccination, but obviously we have to look at the length of time that vaccine protects," he said.

Japan: Avian Influenza

Bird flu has been confirmed in Sanglekhola of Tarkeshwar Municipality in the district.

The flu has been detected among chickens and ducks reared there. According to Chief of the Livestock Department of the Municipality, Dhanapati Ray, the viral disease has been detected among chickens and ducks reared by 2 locals.

The flu was confirmed following a sample test conducted at the Tripureshwar-based central laboratory.

With this, the local authorities have urged all to adopt extra precaution to prevent the flu from spreading further.

United States: Plague

The New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) reports a cat has been diagnosed with plague in Los Alamos County, making it the first plague case in New Mexico this year.

"NMDOH staff will conduct an environmental investigation to ensure the safety of the immediate family and neighbors," said Secretary-Designate Dr. Tracie Collins. "We also offer a friendly reminder: even in the midst of a global pandemic, other diseases still occur in New Mexico, and there are steps people can take to keep themselves and their pets safe."

The cat, which became ill in early January, has now recovered following veterinary treatment.

Plague is a bacterial disease in wildlife and is generally transmitted to pets through the bites of infected fleas or after eating an infected animal. Humans can also contract plague via infected fleas or direct contact with infected animals.

United States: Equine Herpesvirus

Officials at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) confirmed on Jan. 26] that a horse at a Hanover County boarding facility was confirmed with equine herpesvirus myeloencephalopathy. Thirty-two horses at 2 different facilities were exposed. The positive horse, a cross-bred gelding, began showing clinical signs on Jan. 25. Signs included dribbling urine and hind limb ataxia, progressing to recumbency (down and unable to rise). The horse, which had been vaccinated, was euthanized.

One of the exposed horses was from another farm in Hanover County, which is now also under quarantine.

EHV 101 Herpesvirus is highly contagious among horses and can cause a variety of ailments in equids, including rhinopneumonitis (a respiratory disease usually found in young horses), abortion in broodmares, and equine herpesvirus myeloencephalitis.

In many horses, the first or only sign of EHV-1 infection is fever, which can go undetected. In addition to fever, other common signs of EHV-1 infection in young horses include cough, decreased appetite, depression, and a nasal discharge. Pregnant mares typically show no signs of infection before they abort, and abortions usually occur late in gestation (around 8 months) but can be earlier. Abortions can occur anywhere from 2 weeks to several months following infection with EHV-1.

Mozambique: Cholera

The northern Mozambican province of Nampula has recorded so far 133 cases of cholera, after an outbreak that was first reported in January 2021 in the district of Meconta, which is also the epicenter of the disease.

Addressing a meeting of the Emergency Operational Centre (COE), at which the province's current epidemiological situation was presented, the Secretary of State for Nampula, Mety Gondola, said 52 patients are now hospitalized with cholera, but there have been no deaths.

"Taking into account the cumulative number of cases, we have declared a cholera outbreak in the district of Meconta. The situation is worrying, but we hope we can depend on everyone's support so that we can bring it under control," Gondola said.

Besides Meconta, he has also expressed concern with the growing number of diarrhea cases in Moma, Memba, and Erati districts, which might also be cholera, and urged the stakeholders to constantly share information about the spread of the disease. He said that health authorities are monitoring the movement of people in the affected districts, especially in the administrative post of Namialo, in Meconta. "We have stepped up the alert level, as we fear that some people might bring the disease to Nampula city and Monapo district," said Gondola.

India: Anthrax

Within 13 days, 5 elephants have died inside Karlapat Wildlife Sanctuary in Kalahandi district of Odisha, officials said. All the carcasses were found near water bodies, they said. The Principal Chief Conservator of Forest Sashi Pal said the elephant deaths were due to some bacterial infection. "The water bodies in the sanctuary may have been infected," he said.

Divisional Forest Officer, Kalahandi (South Division), Ashok Kumar said, stagnant water is being treated with bleaching powder to avoid further spread and water samples have been collected from different spots for testing. The DFO [Divisional Forest Officer] said that experts from the College of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry, Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT), have arrived in the protected area for conducting field analysis. "Villagers have been advised not to allow their cattle inside the forest as it is suspected that the water bodies may be contaminated," Kumar said. The latest jumbo death was reported on FEB. 13] when an adult elephant died near a waterbody in the sanctuary.

Though the animal was found alive on Feb. 12, it died during the day due to septicaemia, an official said. The first death was reported on Feb. 1, when the carcass of a jumbo was found near Tentulipada village inside the sanctuary. The post-mortem examination revealed that the pachyderm was pregnant. The next 3 deaths were reported from near Ghusurigudi nullah.

India: Kyasanur Forest Disease

A case of Kyasanur Forest disease (KFD) has been reported from Mullankolly under the Pulpally Family Health Centre in Wayanad.

KFD, also known as monkey fever, is a viral disease transmitted to humans through a species of ticks usually found on monkeys.

The patient, a 30-year-old youth, is undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Sulthan Bathery. The patient was hospitalized on Feb. 11, and samples were sent to the virology laboratory at Sulthan Bathery, which confirmed them as a case of KFD, District Medical Officer R. Renuka told The Hindu. Surveillance had been stepped up in hotspots in forest fringes identified by the Health Department, Dr. Renuka said.

Front-line forest staff and high-risk populations living on forest fringes have been advised to use personal protection measures, including gloves and gumboots.

Syria: Foot and Mouth Disease

According to an unofficial/media report, there is a widespread outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in northeastern Syria. Per the news article, veterinary doctor Adnan Hamed from Derik in the far north and east of Syria told Shafaq News: "The disease has spread widely throughout Syria, especially in the areas administered by the Autonomous Administration in northern and eastern Syria." Hamed stated, "The Russian vaccine used to come from Damascus and be distributed to the health and agricultural extension directorates in the region, and it has been missing for more than 3 months. The Turkish and Iranian vaccines are not useful, and the lack of the necessary Russian vaccine may lead to a real disaster in the region, and we appeal to the competent health authorities to secure the vaccine as soon as possible."

On the other hand, weather conditions in this time of the year are more favorable for the spread of the disease as well as the lack of movement restrictions in the war-torn affected region. According to FAO (July-September 2020 report), FMDV serotypes in Syria belong to Pool 3 (West Eurasia and Middle East), which includes serotypes A, Asia 1, and O (SAT 2 reported only in Oman in 2017). Endemic pools represent independently circulating and evolving foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) genotypes; within the pools, cycles of emergence and spread occur that usually affect multiple countries in the region. In the absence of specific reports, it should be assumed that the serotypes indicated are continuously circulating in parts of the pool area and would be detected if sufficient surveillance were in place.

Australia: Ross River Virus

Residents in southern New South Wales [NSW] are advised to take extra steps to protect themselves from mosquito bites following a suspected outbreak of Ross River fever and the Barmah Forest virus locally.

The Southern NSW Local Health District says an increased number of suspected cases of both mosquito-borne diseases have been reported to the public health unit and are currently under investigation. So far, the investigation suggests the infections were acquired on the NSW South Coast.

The NSW Arbovirus Surveillance and Mosquito Monitoring program has seen a moderate number of mosquitoes in early February at a trapping site in Narooma.

Manager of infectious diseases April Roberts-Witteveen said symptoms of both diseases are similar and include a rash, fever, chills, headache, aches, and pains, which usually show about 3 weeks after a mosquito bite. "Tiredness and sore and swollen joints can also occur," she said. "Anyone experiencing these symptoms should see their doctor."

Symptoms can subside after a few weeks, but some people may experience them for weeks or even months.

Italy: Kiebsiella Varicola

A bacterium considered an emerging pathogen in humans has been linked to a serious lung infection in a horse in Italy.

The details of the horse's illness are described in a case report just published in the journal BMC Veterinary Research.

The 17-year-old saddle horse was found to be infected with Klebsiella variicola. The researchers believe it is the first time K. variicola has been identified as the cause of respiratory disease in a horse.

The bacterium was first isolated in Mexico in 2004, initially being identified as an endophyte in soil and plants such as bananas, rice, sugar cane, and maize. However, recent studies have identified the micro-organisim as an emerging pathogen in humans.

"It has been isolated in humans from many clinical samples, including blood, tracheal aspirates, several types of secretions, as well as the respiratory and urinary tract," Elisabetta Mondo and her colleagues at the University of Bologna noted.

In animals, species of Klebsiella are associated with infections of the urinary tract, respiratory tract, and sepsis, while K. variicola  has to date been described only in bovine mastitis.

The horse at the center of the case study was admitted to the university's Veterinary Teaching Hospital, part of the Department of Veterinary Medical Sciences. It was laboring under respiratory distress and had a fever.

February 12, 2021

Bulgaria: Avian Influenza

The Bulgarian Food Safety Agency reported in a statement on Feb. 3 an outbreak of the highly pathogenic avian influenza.

The virus was detected in a farm with 99,000 laying hens in the town of Slavyanovo, some 190 km northeast of Sofia, after mortality there has increased, the statement said. All measures have been taken immediately to eradicate the outbreak, it said.

The last outbreak of the disease in Bulgaria was registered in June 2020, the statement added.

Philippines: African Swine Fever

At least 12 villages in Dulag, Leyte have been placed under strict surveillance due to new cases of African swine fever (ASF), the Department of Agriculture (DA) announced on Jan. 31. These villages are within the 7 to 10 km radius of a confirmed ASF case in Combis village.

"Village officials were given a thorough orientation briefing by the regional task force and proper advice on how to manage, contain, and control the spread of the disease," the DA regional office said in a statement. All hog raisers in Dulag, some 41 kilometers south of this city, are advised to closely monitor their respective hogs and report to their municipal agriculture office any observed disease symptoms of hogs and institute strict quarantine measures, avoid swill feeding, and, most importantly, to report immediately any incidence of unusual deaths.

Dulag is the 4th town in Leyte Province with confirmed ASF cases. The first case was in Abuyog town recorded on Jan. 14. Dulag is about 44 kilometers from Abuyog. Other areas with ASF are Javier and MacArthur. Last week, the agriculture department collected blood samples in Dulag after the unusual and sudden death of a sow in Combis village.

"Our appeal to local government units in the adjoining areas is to take immediate action and seriously address the spread of the animal disease in their locality. Create or reactivate their ASF task force by stepping up efforts to regulate the movement of live pigs, pork, and processed pork products that go inside and outside their respective towns," the DA said. Since the ASF outbreak hit the province early in January, at least 1,600 pigs have been culled to contain the spread of the disease.

Initial investigation showed that the ASF virus could have been transmitted to local farms in Leyte through infected boar being used for natural mating and by hog traders who may have fed their stocks with contaminated food products.

United States: Equine Infectious Anemia

Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) officials confirmed equine infectious anemia (EIA) in one quarter horse on a Dallas County premises on Jan. 26. This is the first confirmed case of EIA in Texas this year. The horse was confirmed positive after testing was performed to meet regulatory requirements. The premises have been quarantined and will not be released until TAHC's requirements are met. TAHC staff is working closely with the owner and local veterinarian to monitor potentially exposed horses and implement biosecurity measures.

"Last year, 17 horses tested positive for equine infectious anemia in Texas," said Dr. Andy Schwartz, state veterinarian. "These cases serve as a reminder that EIA is present in our state, biosecurity and sanitary practices are invaluable and required EIA testing for equine event participation and congregation continues to be of the utmost importance."

EIA is an incurable, infectious viral disease spread through blood-to-blood contact, not through close proximity or direct contact. The virus can be transmitted from an infected equine to an uninfected equine by biting flies, the use of unsterilized or contaminated medical instruments, or through a blood transfusion. The commonest clinical sign of acute EIA is fever, which often precedes the development of other signs. In chronic cases, signs such as weight loss, weakness, anemia, and swelling of the lower legs, chest, and abdomen may occur.

Brazil: Yellow Fever

In the municipalities of Palmeira, Anita Garibaldi and Bocaina do Sul, in Serra de Santa Catarina [SC], monkey deaths have been confirmed by the Central Laboratory (LACEN) as yellow fever. The last confirmation came on Feb. 2, in Palmeira.

According to the Municipal Health Secretariat, the monkey was found dead in the Sao Sebastiao do Canoas locality on Jan.19, but the results of the tests were only released now. The test showed that the animal was infected by the sylvatic type disease -- that is, it is transmitted to humans through mosquitoes infected with the virus.

The secretariat also awaits results relating to 3 other monkeys that were found dead in the municipality, in the locality of Mato Escuro. This is the first time in the last 4 years that Palmeira, with just over 6,600 inhabitants, has confirmed yellow fever cases.

This year so far, there are 4 confirmations of monkey deaths from the disease in Santa Catarina. In addition to the Serra, another confirmed case was in the Planalto Norte, in Mafra.

Peru: Rabies

The Departmental Veterinary Medical College of Lima warned that there is a risk that canine rabies could be reintroduced in the capital.

This situation could be due to the weakness of the epidemiological surveillance system in the capital, a vital tool to identify the increase in cases. Last year, in Lima only, 11 samples were received and processed for the diagnosis of rabies, when in the capital, there are about 2 million dogs.

"There should be approximately 4,000 annual samples as epidemiological surveillance, considering the recommendations of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the current regulations on rabies surveillance in the country," the Veterinary Medical College statement warned.

This situation is complicated if we take into account that, in 2020, the Ministry of Health detected 24 cases of canine rabies in the country, of which 20 corresponded to Arequipa and 4 to Puno. Meanwhile, in January of this year alone, 10 cases of rabies were reported in Arequipa. "This highlights the high risk of human rabies cases in Arequipa and canine rabies in other cities of the country, as well as in Lima," he said.

Australia: Anthrax

The first case of anthrax to occur this summer has been confirmed in New South Wales (NSW), prompting the state's Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and Local Land Services (LLS) to urge producers to vaccinate at-risk livestock.

In late January, anthrax was detected in an unvaccinated mob of ewes and lambs on a property in the state's Central West. The property had a previous history of anthrax. The affected animals were ewes that had not been vaccinated for anthrax, and biosecurity measures at the affected property, including stock movement restrictions and the vaccination of remaining livestock, were immediately imposed.

NSW DPI senior veterinary officer Graham Bailey said while there were no general public health risks or trade implications from the detection, it served as a timely reminder.

Cases of anthrax in NSW tended to occur in a region that runs through the center of the state, between Bourke and Moree in the north, to Albury and Deniliquin in the south, Dr. Bailey said. "Anthrax can be prevented by annual vaccination of cattle and sheep. Producers in high-risk locations are encouraged to consider vaccination," he said. Ingestion of soil by cattle, sheep, and other ruminants was one of the key risk factors for anthrax, Dr. Bailey said.

Australia: Ross River Virus

Health authorities are warning Gippsland residents to protect themselves against mosquitoes following the detection of the Ross River virus in 10 people in Wellington Shire so far this year.

While the latest warning from the Victorian Health Department is for people traveling to the Bellarine Peninsula and surf coast regions, where there has been a big jump in cases in recent months, local infections show the virus is still present in mosquitoes in Gippsland.

A woman was diagnosed with the virus in December and believes she contracted it after being stung by mosquitoes while exercising near Lake Guthridge. Her symptoms have included debilitating pain -- particularly in her feet, ankles, and knees -- and fatigue, which followed a rash early on. While she is slowly recovering now, during the worst of the illness she found it a struggle to just get out of bed and dress.

Congo: Ebola

On Feb. 7, the Minister of Health of the Democratic Republic of the Congo declared the 12th outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) after the laboratory confirmation of one case in North Kivu Province. The case was an adult female living in Biena Health Zone. To date, the source of infection is still under investigation.

On Jan. 25, the case presented with nasal bleeding. The woman received outpatient care at a local health center, then was admitted to a second health center with signs of physical weakness, dizziness, joint pain, epigastric pain, liquid stools, headache, and difficulty breathing. On [3 Feb 2021], a blood sample was collected for EVD testing due to her epidemiological link with an EVD survivor. She died on Feb. 4.

On Feb. 6, Butembo laboratory confirmed the case positive for EVD by GeneXpert.

February 4, 2021

United States: Eastern Equine Encephalitis

A 4-year-old quarter horse from a private facility in Volusia County has been confirmed with eastern equine encephalitis (EEE).

The unvaccinated horse showed signs of inability to stand, incoordination, and weakness of hind limbs earlier this month and was euthanized.

This is the first confirmed case of EEE in Florida for 2021.

It appears this may be a year of early vaccination and likely continual vaccination. EEE vaccine is often combined with Western equine encephalitis and tetanus. Sometimes there is also Venezuelan equine encephalitis in the vaccine (VEWT). Some vaccines are missing the Venezuelan portion but have West Nile virus instead. And some vaccines have all of these.

Canada: Pertussis

The Northwest Territories' chief public health officer has declared an outbreak of pertussis, or whooping cough, in the Dehcho region after a total of 7 cases were confirmed in 2 communities. The cases were confirmed in Jean Marie River and Fort Simpson, according to an advisory issued Jan. 13. Last week, officials advised of 4 people that had been diagnosed in Fort Simpson.

Pertussis is a vaccine-preventable disease that affects the lungs and respiratory tract. It's particularly dangerous to children under one year of age.

This is the second year in a row the territory has declared a pertussis outbreak. An outbreak declared in January 2020 in the Yellowknife and Tlicho regions led to at least 55 confirmed cases.

Residents of Jean Marie River and Fort Simpson are being asked to confirm their pertussis vaccinations as soon as possible by contacting their health center, the advisory states. While the vaccine is safe and effective, the advisory says, immunity from it may fade over time. Boosters are typically offered in Grade 7, and then every 10 years as an adult. Pregnant women are also advised to get a vaccine between 27 and 32 weeks of their pregnancy, regardless of their last dose, in order to protect the newborn.

Kenya: Rift Valley Fever

A roll-out has been launched to vaccinate thousands of cattle in Isiolo County following reported cases of Rift Valley fever (RVF) disease outbreak.

The vaccination, which will be carried for the next 21 days in Meri and Garbatula sub-counties of Isiolo, will target animals in hot spot areas where cases have been reported recently. Seven people and more than 100 heads of cattle succumbed to the disease recently in Erisaboru Biliki and Sericho areas of Isiolo County.

Speaking during the launch, Dr. Lawrence Mwongela, the Isiolo County Executive Committee in the ministry of agriculture, said that 150,000 doses of vaccine have been donated by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) and at the same time thanked other implementing partners who are working together with the county government to facilitate the success of the program.

Senegal: Avian Influenza

Some 750 pelicans found dead in a UNESCO World Heritage site in northern Senegal last week have tested positive for H5N1 bird flu, the head of the parks authority told Reuters. Rangers found the pelicans in the Djoudj bird sanctuary, a remote pocket of wetland near the border with Mauritania and a resting place for birds that cross the Sahara Desert into West Africa each year. The birds were incinerated and the park is closed, said Bocar Thiam, Senegal's parks director.

The sanctuary is a transit place for about 350 species of birds but only pelicans were found dead.

In January, Senegal reported an outbreak of H5N1 on a poultry farm in the Thies region about 120 mi south, resulting in the culling of about 100,000 chickens. It is not clear whether the 2 outbreaks are linked.

Uganda: Foot and Mouth Disease

The authorities in Kiruhuura District have banned all animal movements in the district, one of the latest measures to contain spread of foot and mouth disease (FMD). The disease has persisted since November and has so far spread to the sub-counties of Kikatsi, Kenshunga, Kashongi, Kinoni and Kiruhura Town Council. Each of these sub-counties has at least one farm affected by FMD. Others, including Kikatsi Sub-county, have as many as 8 farms affected by the disease.

"Kiruhura District authorities have stopped all animal movements within and outside the district and suspended all animal slaughter in all centers," the district veterinary officer, Dr. Grace Asiimwe, said. "Looking at the pattern of the spread, it is basically through animal movements; farm to farm or to market centers. When we stop that, we think it will help us to stop the spread [of the disease]. Right now you find an infected farm here, another 3 km away and another 10 km. The only way to control further spread is stopping animal movements," Dr. Asiimwe added.

Early this month, 14 dairies in the sub-counties of Kikatsi, Kenshunga, Kashongi, and Kiruhura Town Council, were closed due to the continued spread of FMD in those communities. The authorities stopped all milk collectors and transporters who had been traversing farms, and urged farmers to cooperate and be vigilant.

United States: Brucellosis

State biologists have found an unusual disease among caribou in Southwest Alaska. The disease is called brucellosis, and the Department of Fish and Game recently detected cases in the Mulchatna Caribou herd; they discovered the first potential case about a year ago.

Biologists typically find the bacteria brucella, which cause brucellosis, in caribou herds to the north, not in the southwestern part of the state. The disease is caused by the bacteria brucella; it can be lethal to caribou, and it can also lead to miscarriages.

"This was the first time we were having actual cases in the Mulchatna herd," Dr. Kimberlee Beckmen, a wildlife veterinarian for Fish and Game, said. "It's such a low level in caribou throughout Alaska, we don't pick it up very often. Right now, we know there's an increase, because more caribou in the herd have brucella or are showing antibodies."

Biologists have detected those antibodies during routine sampling. They also found the bacteria in 2 dead caribou and have observed swollen knees and enlarged scrotums in others. A common sign of brucellosis in caribou is swelling in the knees, where most of the bacteria are stored.

Germany: Avian Influenza

An outbreak of bird flu on a farm in the eastern German state of Brandenburg has forced authorities to begin slaughtering about 14,000 turkeys, the state government said Feb. 3, reporting the third outbreak there in recent weeks. Type H5N8 bird flu was confirmed in a farm in the Uckermark area, the Brandenburg state government said.

A series of outbreaks of bird flu have been reported in Germany and elsewhere in Europe in past months with wild birds suspected to be spreading the disease.

Sweden planned to cull around 1.3 million chickens after bird flu was found on a farm in the country, Sweden's Board of Agriculture said.

The risk to humans from the disease is considered low, but past outbreaks among farm birds have resulted in extensive slaughtering programs to contain the spread.

January 28, 2021

United States: Chronic Wasting Disease

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) confirms a wild deer has tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD).

The DNR says the deer was an adult buck harvested in the Town of Port Edwards during the 2020 gun-deer season and tested as part of the department's disease surveillance efforts.

"Unfortunately, I wasn't necessarily surprised by the announcement we found the first in Wood County, we've seen it pop up in surrounding counties Marathon, Adams, Juneau, and Portage in recent years so it wasn't necessarily unexpected but it is disappointing to continue to see that spread," said Ryan Hafele a Wildlife Area Supervisor for the DNR.

He says there were 19,348 deer tested statewide in 2019 for CWD, and of that 1,338 tested positive for the disease.

Due to the deer's location, the DNR is renewing bating and feeding bans in Juneau, Adams, and Wood counties, as required by law. The law requires the ban in counties or portions of counties within a 10-mile radius of the deer testing positive for CWD.

United States: Covid 19

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, public attention has mainly focused on the number of people who become severely ill and die from COVID-19. But what's become clear in recent months is the large and growing group of people who continue to deal with prolonged symptoms long after their original illness.

In a recent study posted on the preprint server medRxiv, analysis of an international survey of more than 3,700 respondents with COVID-19 found that more than two-thirds were still experiencing numerous symptoms at 6 months, with significant impacts on patients' lives and livelihoods. Respondents with symptoms for more than 6 months said they are experiencing an average of nearly 14 symptoms across multiple organ systems.

With more than 95 million confirmed COVID-19 cases since the beginning of the pandemic, these reports are likely just the tip of the "long COVID" iceberg. And while the world is currently focused on driving down new infections, reducing deaths and hospitalizations, administering new vaccines, and getting the pandemic under control, public health experts are starting to turn their attention to these "long-haulers," as they've come to be known, and the mechanisms behind their lingering symptoms.

China: African Swine Fever

A new form of African swine fever [ASF] identified in Chinese pig farms is most likely caused by illicit vaccines, industry insiders say, a fresh blow to the world's largest pork producer, still recovering from a devastating epidemic of the virus.

Two new strains of ASF have infected more than 1,000 sows on several farms owned by New Hope Liuhe, China's 4th-largest producer, as well as pigs being fattened for the firm by contract farmers, said Yan Zhichun, the company's chief science officer.

Though the strains, which are missing one or 2 key genes present in the wild ASF virus, don't kill pigs like the disease that ravaged China's farms in 2018 and 2019, they cause a chronic condition that reduces the number of healthy piglets born, Yan told Reuters. At New Hope and many large producers, infected pigs are culled to prevent the spread, making the disease effectively fatal.

Although the known infections are limited now if the strains spread widely, they could slash pork output in the world's top consumer and producer; two years ago, swine fever wiped out half of China's 400 million-head pig herd. Pork prices are still at record levels and China is under pressure to strengthen food security amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Germany: Tuberculosis

At the end of December 2020, a child from the northern district was diagnosed with tuberculosis. The child is symptom-free but receiving medical treatment. The diagnosis was made after a cattle herd tested positive for the bacterium and the veterinary office passed on this information to the Health Department. Because of the large number of infected animals, all cattle in the herd were killed as a precaution and disposed of.

The farm has officially been put under restrictions following the initial confirmation of the disease; neither meat nor milk was supplied to the food chain.

In the course of the family's investigation, two persons tested positive and are undergoing medical treatment.

In the case of tuberculosis, persons who accumulated more than 40 contact hours with the patient are considered exposed; this has been conveyed to the child's secondary school in Geretsried. On Jan. 18, all parents of exposed classmates and their teachers shared a video conference with health officials, during which questions could be addressed. The exposed persons will undergo testing and a follow-up. Such measures are not required in other classes of the school.

Bovine tuberculosis is very rare in this region. Germany is officially free from bovine tuberculosis; it is so far unknown how the pathogen was introduced into the herd. Transmission from cattle to humans is also very unusual. A transfer from animal to animal, however, is quite possible.

United States: Rabies

A dog in Onondaga County, N.Y. tested positive for rabies following an encounter with a raccoon, the Onondaga County Health Department said.

Onondaga County Health Commissioner Dr. Indu Gupta said the dog, a household pet, tested positive for the virus after interacting with the raccoon while on a walk with its owner.

Due to contact with the dog, four people were exposed to rabies, and each were given post-exposure prophylaxis. The dog was not up to date on its rabies vaccinations and began experiencing a behavior change and seizures after the injury from the raccoon.

Though the release said there are no human cases for rabies in Onondaga County, 14 animals -- 5 raccoons, 4 bats, 2 skunks, 1 fox, 1 cat, and 1 dog -- tested positive for the virus in Onondaga County in 2020.

Germany: African Swine Fever

A further outbreak of African swine fever (ASF) was confirmed by the National Reference Laboratory at the Friedrich Loeffler Institute (Federal Research Institute for Animal Health; FLI) when a wild boar carcass was found in the district of Gorlitz.

The location is in the existing buffer zone and is about 2 km west of the Rothenburg/Gorlitz airfield and about 3.5 km from the Neisse. Since this is outside of the previously endangered area, the restriction zones must be expanded. With these 2 new cases, the number of ASF-positive cases in Saxony increases to 19.

Minister of Social Affairs Petra Kopping explains: "The positive find is a boar that was found during the regular game hunt, which is carried out systematically in the buffer zone. The new find makes our fight against African swine fever more difficult."

United States: Chronic Wasting Disease

Wildlife managers have documented chronic wasting disease (CWD) in a new swath of the Green River basin in Wyoming.

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department sent out a news release on Jan. 20 announcing a positive hit for the prion disease in a mule deer buck found dead in deer hunt area 138. That 1,628-square-mile zone stretches from the headwaters of Boulder Creek at the Continental Divide, down to the sagebrush-steppe landscape that terminates at Fontenelle Reservoir.

The arrival of the incurable, lethal disease to the southwest slope of the Wind River Range is not a surprise. CWD was confirmed just to the north, in 2017, when the neurological disorder was discovered in a dead mule deer doe found at a property near the Pinedale Airport. Over the crest of the Winds, it has also been documented in an adjoining deer hunt area since 2015.

The chronic wasting disease first showed up in deer on the far west side of the state, but recently it is also being detected in elk in the region. In December, a hunter-killed cow elk shot north of Dubois tested positive.

Australia: Ross River Virus

Ross River fever cases have increased by 260 percent in the southern Riverina in New South Wales, prompting the Murrumbidgee Local Health District (MLHD) to issue a health alert.

Since Jan. 20, 18 new cases of the mosquito-borne disease had been identified across the district, a significant increase from the fewer than 5 notified cases for the same period last year.

MLHD infectious diseases manager April Roberts-Witteveen said the virus was regularly seen in the area.

"Factors such as weather, rainfall, mosquito numbers, and travel out of the area all play a part in determining whether it is a season with a lot of human infections," she said.

"Ross River virus does tend to ebb and flow a bit. Sometimes we get a huge number of infections, and sometimes we get a slow and steady amount, but this is more than we've seen in the past couple of years."

Congo: Monkeypox

The number of monkeypox cases confirmed and suspected, reported in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), was nearly a 1,000-case increase compared to 2019.

In 2019, DRC reported 5,288 suspected monkeypox cases, a high number, indeed; however, this number was eclipsed in 2020, during which a total of 6,257 suspected and confirmed cases were reported. In addition to the number of deaths from 2019 to 2020 more than doubled: 107 and 229 deaths, respectively.

Monkeypox is a rare disease that occurs throughout remote parts of Central and West Africa, often near tropical rain forests. People at risk for monkeypox are those who get bitten by an infected animal or have contact with the animal's rash, blood, or body fluids. It can also be transmitted person to person through respiratory or direct contact and contact with contaminated bedding or clothing.

Fever, headache, muscle aches, swollen lymph nodes, and exhaustion are followed by a rash. Patients are usually ill for 2-4 weeks. Monkeypox is fatal in as many as 10% of people who get it. There is no specific treatment for monkeypox.

January 22, 2021

Nigeria: Yellow Fever

At least 112 people from Ogbadibo and Okpokwu local government areas of Benue state are reported to have died from yellow fever since the outbreak of the disease in September 2020.

The state's epidemiologist, Dr. Terungwa Ngise, confirming the incidence in an interview, said that emergency interventions had been mobilized to the affected communities, including immunization, treatment of already infected persons, supply of mosquito nets, as well as depopulation of mosquitoes responsible for the spread of the disease.

Dr. Ngise, however, expressed worry that the spread of the disease had become heightened following the refusal of a section of the Ogbadibo population to submit themselves to the immunization over traditional beliefs that the deaths and disease were cause by the "gods."

Dr. Ngise regretted that such beliefs had frustrated interventions in the area. He, however, said that despite the people's resistance, the state government will not be deterred in efforts to stop the spread of the disease to other parts of the state.

He, therefore, advised residents in the 2 local government areas to attend to personal hygiene by removing all stagnant water found around them, keeping their environment clean, and availing themselves of the second phase of the yellow fever immunization in the area.

Kenya: Anthrax

Fear has hit a village in Sotik after a man died while 6 others were hospitalized after allegedly coming into contact with the carcass of an animal suspected to have died of anthrax. The 60-year-old man from Itoik village died early Tuesday morning at Kaplong Mission Hospital where he was receiving treatment. He is said to have participated in disposing the carcass of the cow.

It is, however, unclear whether the group feasted on the animal. Health officials said the deceased had pale wounds, a sign suggesting he may have consumed the meat. The 6 who are admitted to Tenwek Hospital in Bomet are out of danger.

According to residents, 7 cows have already died in the area following the suspected anthrax outbreak a week ago. Kapkures chief David Langat confirmed the incident, saying the area is prone to cases of anthrax.

County director of veterinary Dr. Wilson Serem confirmed the outbreak of the disease but was quick to exonerate his office from any blame, saying the cases were not reported to them. Addressing the press, Dr. Serem confirmed the area covering Kipsonoi and Mutarakwa is prone to the disease, saying every year cases of the disease are reported.

He said the vaccination of animals against the disease will start in the next one week. "Anyone whose cow dies with symptoms that resemble anthrax should report to us immediately...they should not touch it to avert infections and deaths," Serem said.

Italy: Brucellosis

Italian police on Jan. 19 shut down a dog breeding farm near Ancona in the region of Marche.

Around 850 small dogs were sequestered at Trecastelli near the Marche port city. Five people were placed under investigation.

As well as being packed into tight, poorly aired pens, around half the dogs were found to be infected with Brucella canis, a very infectious dog bug transmissible to man.

Although it held almost 900 animals, the facility was only authorized for a maximum of 61.

Brucellosis in man is also known as undulant fever, Malta fever, and Mediterranean fever.

Germany: African Swine Fever

Another 30 cases of African swine fever (ASF) have been found in wild boars in eastern Germany in a continuing outbreak among wild animals which has halted German pork exports to Asia.

The new cases were in the eastern state of Brandenburg and bring the number of confirmed instances of the disease in wild boar to 527 in the state, Brandenburg's health ministry said. Along with 17 cases in the eastern region of Saxony, this brings Germany's total reported cases to 544.

All were in wild animals with no farm pigs affected. But 2 of the 30 new reported cases were found about 2 kms outside the core zone where other cases were found, the Brandenburg ministry said. Electric fences are being built around the area of the latest finds.

China, South Korea and Japan all banned German pork imports in September 2020 after ASF was found in wild boars in east Germany.

The disease is not dangerous to humans but is fatal to pigs. Pork buyers often impose import bans on countries where it has been found, even in wild animals.

The German government said it is continuing intensive talks with China about relaxing import bans on German pork imposed after the discovery of ASF in the country.

January 15, 2021

United States: Legionellosis

Following an outbreak of legionnaires' disease at a North Portland, Ore., apartment building, more people are suspected to have the illness based on their symptoms.

Initially, health officials reported that 4 people had to be hospitalized, and one of those people ultimately succumbed to the illness and died. At least one more person has been diagnosed with legionnaire's disease, bringing the confirmed total to 5 people.

On Jan. 5, those who live at the Rosemont Court Apartments on North Dekum Street were told to leave their homes.

As of Jan. 7], the Multnomah County Health Department is advising neighbors in nearby buildings to be aware of any signs of the illness. Now, another 4 people are presumed to have the illness based on new symptoms, the county health department said.

Argentina: Hantavirus

A case of hantavirus infection was confirmed in Bariloche. The individual is a 22-year-old young man who is hospitalized in an intensive care unit and remains in stable condition.

While concern about the increasing coronavirus infections is growing, in the traditional city of Bariloche, a registered a case of a hantavirus infection set off alarms for the local authorities.

The classical tourist district in Patagonia is the most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In Rio Negro province, according to the latest report, 122 deaths, 1333 active cases, and 8007 recoveries have been registered.

Germany: African Swine Fever

The suspicion of African swine fever (ASF) in a wild boar carcass found in Potsdam's Gross Glienicke was not confirmed by the National Reference Laboratory. The Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut (Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, FLI) was able to rule out ASF through extensive, additional examinations of the sent wild boar carcass.

State Secretary for Consumers Anna Heyer-Stuffer, head of the ASF crisis team, said, "I am very happy and relieved about this result! I would like to thank the animal disease control service of the state of Brandenburg for their quick and professional action. I would also like to thank the city of Berlin, the state capital Potsdam, and the surrounding districts, who made all the necessary preparations within a very short time and thus showed that everyone is prepared for an emergency. Because one thing is clear: ASF can also be carried over long distances by humans. We must therefore continue to be very vigilant to prevent the virus from spreading from infected areas."

The first ASF outbreak in German wild boars was officially recorded in the state of Brandenburg on Sept. 10.

United States: Chronic Wasting Disease

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources says the doe was killed in the town of Germania during the recent gun deer season. DNR wildlife biologists say there are plenty of deer in the area, and a wild whitetail testing positive for CWD is not out of the question.

"Given the proximity to wild positives and some captive positives, we're going to continue to see the advancement in the presence of the disease," said Jeff Pritzl, DNR District Wildlife Supervisor.

Hunters say they are concerned.

"The CWD thing. It's just terrible. This area is huge. And it's full of deer. It's one of the best deer hunting in the state, I believe. It's got some of the nicest bucks," one said.

January 3, 2021

United States: Rabies

The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) confirmed a raccoon entered the Lexington Medical Center in West Columbia, South Carolina. The raccoon tested positive for rabies. One person was exposed and has been referred to their healthcare provider. The raccoon was submitted to DHEC's laboratory for testing and was confirmed to have rabies on Dec. 19

"To reduce the risk of getting rabies, always give wild and stray animals plenty of space," said Terri McCollister, Rabies Program team leader. "If you see an animal in need, avoid touching it, and contact someone trained in handling animals, such as your local animal control officer or wildlife rehabilitator."

If you believe you or someone you know has had contact with or been potentially exposed to this or another suspect animal, please reach out to your local Environmental Affairs office. An exposure is defined as direct contact (such as through broken skin or mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, or mouth) with saliva or brain/nervous system tissue from an infected animal.

United States: Strangles

A boarding barn in Carroll County, Maryland, is under voluntary quarantine after one horse tested positive for strangles.

The horse, a 19 year old gelding, developed a cough, fever, and nasal discharge on Dec. 20, and the diagnosis of strangles was confirmed by a veterinarian, according to information reported to the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC). Twelve other horses at the facility were potentially exposed, and 3 are suspected cases at this time.

Also called equine distemper, the infection known as strangles typically begins 10-12 days after exposure to Streptococcus equi bacteria. First the horse experiences a high fever, depression, appetite loss, and enlargement of the lymph nodes between the jawbones. Copious amounts of thick, yellow pus begin draining from the nostrils, and before 3 weeks are up, the abscessed nodes at the throat may burst open to drain.

United States: Legionellosis

An outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at a North Portland apartment complex has killed one person and sickened 3 others, county health officials said.

Multnomah County health officials said Jan. 5 they told more than 100 residents of Rosemont Court on Dekum Street to leave after residents contracted pneumonia, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported.

The health department said experts linked the outbreak to the apartment's water system. County officials are working to clean the building's plumbing system and remove any remaining traces of Legionella, the bacteria that causes the disease.

The health department is working with Northwest Housing Alternatives, which owns Rosemont Court, to find other places for residents to stay, according to a news release. Multnomah County spokeswoman Julie Sullivan-Springhetti said residents were staying in Portland-area hotels, per a contract with the county, while health officials investigate the outbreak source.