Infectious Diseases

Tularemia Epidemic in Kosovo

A report in the InNews Inserbia website states that there has been an outbreak of Tularemia in Kosovo, in which over 200 people were affected in the first six weeks of 2015. The website further quotes the Kosovo Institute of Public Health as having stated:

“The Committee for the Prevention of infectious diseases at the Ministry of Health today declared an epidemic of tularemia in Kosovo. All the teams on the ground are activated in order to prevent new cases of the disease,” said the statement.

It also claims that though there were such a large number of affected people, no fatality had been reported (at the time of the report, at least).
Tularemia is caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis, and had been identified to be a bioterrorism agent and was under intense investigation in the US, Russia and several other countries in the era of development of biowarfare agents. 
An extremely infectious agent, this kind of outbreak needs to be handled with immediate efficiency to prevent massive outbreaks.

Notably, the report does not mention how the diagnoses was made and how the disease was spreading.

Skeptic Oslerphile. Public Health Scientist and Program Manager, Translational Global Health Policy Research Cell, Department of Health Research, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. Past: Scientist, Indian Council of Medical Research, National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases; Senior Research Associate, Public Health Foundation of India. Interests include: Emerging Infections, Public Health, Antimicrobial Resistance, One Health and Zoonoses, Diarrheal Diseases, Medical Education, Medical History, Open Access, Healthcare Social Media and Health2.0. Opinions are my own!

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