Communicable disease threats report, 28 February - 5 March 2016, week 9

Surveillance report
Publication series: Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR)
Time period covered: 28 February - 5 March 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 28 February to 5 March 2016 and includes updates on Zika virus, haemolytic uraemic syndrome in Romania and seasonal influenza.

Executive summary

This issue covers the period 28 February to 5 March 2016 and includes updates on Haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) in Romania and seasonal influenza.

Haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) cases in young children –Romania

Following initial environmental investigations, E. coli O26 has been identified in a soft cheese sample produced by a local company that sells traditional dairy items in the affected Arges district. The cheese was prepared from unpasteurised milk. The factory has been closed and the product is no longer available on the market.
The Ministry of Health in Romania reports that 15 children aged 5 to 38 months were hospitalised in Bucharest and Pitesti between 29 January and 24 February with symptoms of vomiting and diarrhoea and suspected haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS).

Seasonal influenza

During week 8/2016, 25 out of 45 Member States in the WHO European Region reported widespread influenza activity. As only five countries reported high-intensity activity, influenza may have peaked in some parts of the region, as indicated by reports of decreasing or stable trends in 33 countries. 

Thirty-six countries reported influenza virus detections in 47% of specimens from sentinel sources, which is similar to previous weeks. Influenza B virus constituted 47% of influenza virus detections in sentinel samples, indicating a gradual shift towards influenza B. Influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses remained the predominant virus detected through sentinel surveillance, accounting for 85% of the A viruses subtyped. Cases of severe disease were fewer than in previous weeks, but varied between countries.