Communicable disease threats report, 24-30 August 2014, week 35

Surveillance report
Publication series: Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR)
Time period covered: 24-30 August 2014

​The ECDC communicable disease threats report is a weekly bulletin intended for epidemiologists and health professionals in the area of communicable disease prevention and control. Summarising information gathered by ECDC through its epidemic intelligence activities regarding communicable disease threats of concern to the European Union, it also provides updates on the global situation and changes in the epidemiology of communicable diseases
with potential to affect Europe, including diseases that are the focus of eradication efforts.

Executive summary

The ECDC Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR) is a weekly bulletin intended for epidemiologists and health professionals in the area of communicable disease prevention and control. This issue covers the period from 24 to 30 August 2014 and includes updates on:

Outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in West AfricaAs of 26 August 2014, the cumulative number of cases in the four countries – Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone – stands at 3 069, including 1 552 deaths. Since the last CDTR on 21 August 2014, the four affected countries have reported 596 additional cases (69 in Guinea, 406 in Liberia, 119 in Sierra Leone and two in Nigeria) and 202 additional fatalities. This is the largest EVD outbreak ever reported and the number of cases and deaths surpasses all those put together since 1976. ECDC published a risk assessment on 4 August.

Outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in the Democratic Republic of Congo
 On 24 August 2014, an outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) was declared in the Boende area of Equateur province in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This outbreak is the seventh outbreak of EVD occurring in the country. According to ECDC epidemiological update on 29 August, the strain causing the outbreak has been identified as Zaïre ebolavirus, however, there is no evidence that the outbreak in DRC is directly connected to the one in West Africa. The same strain has caused six outbreaks in DRC since 1976, and the case-history of preparing bush meat suggests an independent zoonotic introduction

West Nile virus, transmission season in Europe
During the past week six new cases have been reported in EU Member States. Romania reported its first two cases for the current transmission season. Italy reported its first confirmed case detected in Pavia province (Lombardy region). Greece reported three new probable cases.
In neighbouring countries, Serbia reported nine new cases.

Measles and rubella, monitoring European outbreaks
Since the last monthly update, there has been two reported outbreaks in the European Union: one in Bavaria, Germany and one in Wales in the UK. No new rubella outbreaks were detected in the past month.

Middle East respiratory syndrome- coronavirus (MERS CoV)
Since April 2012, 857 cases of MERS-CoV have been reported by local health authorities worldwide, including 334 deaths. To date, all cases have either occurred in the Middle East, have direct links to a primary case infected in the Middle East, or have returned from this area. The source of the virus remains unknown but the pattern of transmission points towards an animal reservoir in the Middle East from which humans sporadically become infected through zoonotic transmission.
ECDC published an updated risk assessment on 21 August.