Outbreak of hepatitis A virus infection in travellers returning from Egypt
Between 1 November 2012 and 30 April 2013, 15 confirmed cases of hepatitis A virus infections with subgenotype IB and identical RNA sequence, and 89 probable cases, have been reported in 14 EU/EFTA countries. All cases have a travel history to Egypt.
Due to the fact that 15 of these cases, identified in three different countries, have identical sequences, a multistate outbreak has been confirmed with exposure occurring in Egypt. The descriptive epidemiology points to a possible persistent common source of infection contaminated with viruses sharing an identical sequence.Preliminary epidemiological investigations in affected countries do not definitively point to any particular source of infection. RNA sequencing of probable cases and interviews of probable and confirmed cases should enable the development of a more conclusive hypothesis on the source of infection.