A non-systematic mention of outbreaks that have caught my attention this week. For a more comprehensive search, there is ProMED Mail. One can also skim through the MOH’s weekly infectious diseases bulletin, which is only about local notifiable diseases (where one can quickly see that we have had more dengue and HFMD cases compared to […]

Coincidentally, on the same day I posted my mini-rant about responsibility for antimicrobial resistance, Prof. Michael Edmond, Richard P. Wenzel Professor of Internal Medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University also wrote a post about the state of infection prevention programs (no longer “infection control programs”) in the U.S. at his influential blog. It is interesting to […]

Dr. Kathryn Holt from the University of Melbourne published a very important paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences yesterday, using whole genome sequencing to study the population structure as well as virulence and antimicrobial resistance factors of Klebsiella pneumoniae. A total of 288 isolates from 6 countries (Australia, Indonesia, Laos, Singapore,  U.S.A. […]

This is written as a closure (for now) for the previous influenza articles (here and here), which reported on the influenza A(H3N2) epidemic in the U.S.A and the similar high proportion of influenza A(H3N2) among the Singapore influenza isolates that were typed. Various indicators suggest that the epidemic in the U.S.A. is coming to an […]

The big news for antimicrobial resistance over the past week has been the decision by McDonald’s (the fast food chain) to use only antibiotic-free chicken in 2 years’ time. This will only affect the U.S. branches, although the company is also exploring phasing this in Europe. No signs of this happening in Singapore or the […]

Measles has been in the news (even in the Straits Times) lately, because of the U.S. outbreak that originated from Disneyland in California. To briefly recap, at least 40 visitors/workers at Disneyland, California were exposed to measles in December last year and have developed the disease. The index case (or cases) has not been identified, […]

For the week ending 3rd January 2015, influenza activity in the US remained above epidemic levels, defined by the pneumonia and influenza mortality surveillance that was above the epidemic threshold of 6.9% for that week. The laboratory confirmed influenza hospitalisation rates have also gone up in all age groups, alarmingly so for those who are […]

There are a large number of news reports on the flu season in USA currently, including this fairly comprehensive one from CNN, after the statistics for  mortality from pneumonia and influenza in the USA crossed 6.8% (the epidemic threshold) on Week 51 of 2014. There have been 15 paediatric deaths to date (as of 20th […]

A returning healthcare worker from Guinea – Dr Craig Spencer from Médicins Sans Frontières – has tested positive for Ebola in New York, USA. Occasional isolated importation of Ebola into the US – as well as to other countries with direct links to the affected West African countries – is expected. This is a second chance […]

After the flurry of activities following the public dismay and outrage at Ebola transmitting to two healthcare workers in Dallas, Texas, we are nearing the end (of sorts) of the initial Ebola “saga” in the USA. The cruise ship Carnival Magic carrying a potentially infected healthcare worker has docked – no one was infected. There […]