ECDC, in conjunction with the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) in Germany and National Institute of Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) in the Netherlands, has published a new risk assessment on the risks to human health of the Schmallenberg virus.
Animal and human health authorities, both at national and EU level, have been working together closely since the outbreak of the virus in ruminant animals. The collaboration is to ensure the rapid detection of changes in the epidemiology in animals and humans, particularly among people who had been in close contact with infected animals.
Epidemiological and microbiological studies conducted by the RKI and RIVM both conclude that it is very unlikely that the Schmallenberg virus poses a risk to humans. This confirms the preliminary assessment expressed by ECDC and RIVM.
As a general precaution, animal workers, farmers and veterinarians are advised to follow existing protective hygiene measures when working with livestock and abortion material.
Joint ECDC/ RIVM/ RKI risk assessment: New Orthobunyavirus isolated from infected cattle and small livestock ─ potential implications for human health, May 2012
ECDC risk assessment: New Orthobunyavirus isolated from infected cattle and small livestock – potential implications for human health December, 2011
RKI – Schmallenberg virus
RIVM study, May 2012
European Food Safety Authority (EFSA):
"Schmallenberg" virus: analysis of the epidemiological data, March 2012
"Schmallenberg" virus: analysis of the epidemiological data, Apr 2012