Communicable disease threats report, 24-30 July 2016, week 30

Surveillance report
Publication series: Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR)
Time period covered: 24 - 30 July 2016

​The ECDC Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR) is a weekly bulletin for epidemiologists and health professionals on active public health threats. This issue covers the period 24-30 July 2016 and includes updates on rubella, measles, poliomyelitis, Zika virus, yellow fever, West Nile fever and botulism among people who inject drugs.

Executive summary

This issue covers the period 24 – 30 July 2016 and highlights updates on Zika virus infection, West Nile virus and botulism among others.

​The ECDC Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR) is a weekly bulletin for epidemiologists and health professionals about active public health threats. This issue covers the period 24 – 30 July 2016 and highlights updates on Zika virus infection, West Nile virus and botulism among others.

Zika virus infection

Since week 45/2015, 18 EU and EEA countries (Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK) have reported 1 062 travel-associated Zika virus infections through The European Surveillance System (TESSy).

On 25 July, the Department of Health in Spain reported the birth of a child presenting with microcephaly in Catalonia. The woman was known to be infected by Zika and dengue viruses and the case was initially reported on 5 May when malformations were detected in the foetus.

One country, Antigua, and one UK territory, Barbuda and Turks and Caicos, have reported mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission for the first time, in the week to 27 July 2016.

ECDC publishes an epidemiological update every Friday together with maps with information on countries or territories which have reported confirmed autochthonous cases of Zika virus infection.

West Nile fever

On 28 July, three cases of West Nile fever in humans were in Italy (1) and Romania (2). These are the first cases in EU since the beginning of the 2016 transmission season. 

West Nile fever cases in humans are available in ECDC’s weekly updated West Nile fever maps. 

Botulism

In July 2016, Germany reported two cases of botulism affecting people who inject drugs. The first case, a 52-year old male, was reported on 1 July 2016 to the Robert Koch Institute in Germany. The second case was detected on 25 July 2016 in a 40-year-old man with onset of neurological symptoms on 17 July 2016.

On 12 March 2015, a case of wound botulism, type B neurotoxin, was reported by Germany in a drug user from the Berlin area who injected heroin. From December 2014 to October 2015, several cases were reported from Norway and Scotland. The source of heroin contamination with C. botulinum spores is being investigated.

ECDC published a rapid risk assessment on 14 February 2015 with EMCDDA related to a similar outbreak affecting Norway and Scotland. The options for mitigating the risk of more cases of wound botulism highlighted in this rapid risk assessment remain valid.