Epidemiological update: Botulism in Germany, 8 May 2017
On 20 December 2016, ECDC and EFSA published a joint rapid outbreak assessment describing a cluster of six laboratory-confirmed German and Spanish cases of foodborne botulism caused by botulinum neurotoxin type E which occurred during November and December 2016. All of the six patients had consumed dried and salted roach, a fresh and brackish water fish (Rutilus rutilus).
Hand Hygiene Day
ECDC tools: surveillance is essential to prevent and control healthcare-associated infections
Today, ECDC’s Healthcare-associated Infections Surveillance Network (HAI-Net) publishes two updated protocols for the surveillance of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs): one for surgical site infections (SSIs) and prevention indicators, and another one for HAIs and prevention indicators in intensive care units (ICUs), both to be used by European hospitals. An update of the protocol for the surveillance of Clostridium difficile infections (CDIs) was published on 21 April.
Point prevalence surveys of healthcare-associated infections and antimicrobial use in hospitals and long-term care facilities across Europe are ongoing
ECDC point prevalence surveys (PPSs) estimate that each year 3.5 million healthcare-associated infections occur in acute care hospitals, and 4.2 million in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) across Europe.
Epidemiological update: Measles - monitoring European outbreaks, 5 May 2017
A measles outbreak in Romania has been ongoing since February 2016. Cases continue to be reported despite ongoing response measures that have been implemented at national level through reinforced vaccination activities. Between 1 January 2016 and 28 April 2017, Romania reported 5 119 cases. In 2016, a number of additional EU/EEA countries reported measles outbreaks, and an increase in the number of cases continues to be observed in 2017. Some previous and ongoing measles outbreaks in other EU/EEA countries have been epidemiologically linked to the current outbreak in Romania.
Epidemiological update: Yellow fever outbreak in Brazil, 5 May 2017
Yellow fever is a mosquito-borne viral infection present in some tropical areas of Africa and South America. On 6 January 2017, Brazil reported an outbreak of yellow fever that started in December 2016 and that has been ongoing since then. Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Suriname have also reported cases of yellow fever in 2017.
Fight antibiotic resistance - it's in your hands!
Each year on 5 May, the “SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands” campaign takes place as part of a major global effort led by the World Health Organization (WHO) to improve hand hygiene in healthcare settings. The campaign was launched in 2009 as an extension of the WHO First Global Patient Safety Challenge: “Clean Care is Safer Care”. This year’s campaign highlights the fact that infection prevention and control, including hand hygiene, can make a difference towards managing antibiotic resistance in healthcare settings.
ECDC assesses risk of ‘do-it-yourself’ CRISPR gene engineering kit contaminated with pathogenic bacteria
On 24 March 2017, German authorities reported the contamination of a ‘do-it-yourself’ (DIY) Bacterial Gene Engineering CRISPR (Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) kit with pathogenic bacteria (risk group 2), including some that are multidrug-resistant with production of Extended Spectrum Beta-Lactamase (ESBL). The kits are produced in the United States and sold over the internet, targeting non-professional users who want to study biology and life science using similar biotechnology engineering tools found in laboratory settings.
Strong engagement of national public health laboratories to respond to communicable disease outbreaks and improve monitoring of antimicrobial resistance in the European Union.
The EU Laboratory Capability (EULabCap) report published today,
on the results of the 2015 survey, concludes that the EU/EEA as a whole has a strong and improving public health microbiology system, with an average EULabCap score of 7.5 on a scale of 10, up from 6.9 in 2013 and 7.3 in 2014.