Ebola treatment trial: two drugs identified as more effective
Two out of the four drugs tested in a multi-drug randomised control trial have been found more effective in treating Ebola, the World Health Organization announced on Monday. The Data and Safety Monitoring Board, an independent body that has been reviewing interim safety and efficacy data, has therefore recommended that the study be stopped and that all future patients be randomized to receive either REGN-EB3 or mAb114, in what is being considered an extension phase of the study.
Targeted testing for viral hepatitis: Europe’s persistent public health challenge
Targeted testing is an essential element of any strategy to eliminate viral hepatitis across the countries in the European Union and European Economic Area. Some preliminary monitoring results on the response to hepatitis B and C presented around World Hepatitis Day show that diagnosing chronic infections is still a challenge in the EU/EEA.
Syphilis notifications in the EU/EEA up by 70% since 2010
The number of syphilis cases has been consistently going up across Europe since 2010, mostly affecting men who have sex with men living in urban areas. In 2017, notification rates reached an all-time high in the EU/EEA countries with more than 33 000 reported cases. An in-depth ECDC study published today describes the factors behind this increase and outlines the evidence-based options for public health control of syphilis, including case finding and management as well as educational activities.
ECDC Expert consultation on community engagement in public health emergency preparedness
The expert consultation meeting organised by ECDC seeks to identify enabling factors and barriers to good practice in community engagement in the context of public health emergency preparedness. Outcomes of this meeting will inform the development of an ECDC guidance on the topic.
ECDC’s HEPSA preparedness self-assessment tool is now available in all EU/EEA languages
The HEPSA (Health Emergency Preparedness Self-Assessment) tool that ECDC launched in 2018 in English is now available in all EU/EEA languages. This tool aims at supporting countries in improving their level of public health emergency preparedness.
ECDC: first detected cases of extensively drug-resistant gonorrhoea threaten future treatment
Within a matter of weeks, three cases of gonorrhoea that are resistant to the recommended first line antibiotic treatment have been detected in Europe and Australia. These are the first global reports of Neisseria gonorrhoeae with high-level resistance to azithromycin and ceftriaxone resistance that also show resistance to several other vital antibiotics. At a time with limited alternatives to the current dual therapy, lack of a vaccine and insufficient surveillance capacity in some regions, these cases highlight the growing threat of drug-resistance – which could lead to untreatable gonorrhoea.
Expert consultation meeting on West Nile virus maps
The European public health and blood authorities responded to the threat posed by West Nile virus to blood safety of blood and blood components by adopting preventive measures which are defined in the EU blood legislation, professional guides of the Council of Europe and the EU WNV blood transfusion preparedness plan. The measures include the deferral of blood donors that have visited or residing in a NUTS 3 area considered to be affected (i.e. with at least one confirmed case).
World AIDS Day 2017
One in 2 people living with HIV are diagnosed late in the course of their infection. So late, that two out of three people with AIDS in the EU/EEA receive their diagnosis within only three months of discovering they had HIV. For World AIDS Day 2017, ECDC highlighted the problem of late diagnosis and the need for diversifying HIV testing approaches.