The pooled prevalence of Zika infection in blood donations was 1.02%. The prevalence varied greatly and reached to high-risk level in most of the situations. The results suggest that nucleic acid tests (NAT) for blood screening and pathogen reduction/inactivation technology (PRT) should be implemented in Zika-endemic areas and appropriate strategies should be designed according to different conditions.
To control the deadly fungus, scientists have to better understand how it spreads.
Eroding trust in vaccines leaves populations vulnerable, global study finds
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Over the weekend and through today, the ministry of health in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) recorded 23 new Ebola cases and 19 deaths, while a Katwa hospital saw a violent attack that left one of the assailants dead. The totals swell outbreak numbers to 1,340 cases, of which 1,274 are confirmed. The number of deaths rose to 874.
influenza has caused up to 57,300 deaths and sickened up to 41.3 million people, according to new estimates. And the CDC reported five new flu-related deaths in children, raising the total confirmed this season to 91.
The current outbreak has a case-fatality rate of 62%, the highest of any documented Ebola outbreak.
Doctors Without Border (MSF), which has been critical of the WHO’s response, said today that the organization was still failing to control the outbreak. “Whatever the official status of this outbreak is, it is clear that the outbreak is not under control and therefore we need a better collective effort. The virus has not spread to neighboring countries so far, but the possibility exists,” said Gwenola Seroux, emergency manager at MSF in a press statement. Ron Klain, the United States Ebola response coordinator during the West African outbreak, took to Twitter to criticize the WHO. “The response is failing to get the disease under control,” Klain said. “This is particularly worrisome given that — unlike the Ebola response in 2014-15 — this effort has the benefit of a highly effective vaccine that can prevent the disease’s spread.” Klain called for the US government to step up its response efforts for this crisis, and quickly. The United States has not had feet on the ground in the DRC since September, when Trump administration officials removed personnel amid security concerns.
A University of Arkansas biologist found a newly discovered species of ebolavirus, named Bombali, in a bat caught in Kenya. Bombali, which is not known to infect humans, had previously been found only in Sierra Leone, 3,400 miles to the west.
Multiple states across the country have reported outbreaks of hepatitis A, primarily among people who use drugs and people experiencing homelessness. Since the hepatitis A outbreaks were first identified in 2016, more than 15,000 cases, 8,500 (57%) hospitalizations, and 140 deaths as a result of hepatitis A virus (HAV) infection have been reported. This Health Alert Network (HAN) update recommends that public health departments, healthcare facilities, and partners and programs providing services to affected populations vaccinate at-risk groups against hepatitis A, applying the updated recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).