A total of 1,503 human cases of West Nile fever (WNF) were reported in European Union/European Economic Area (EU/EEA) countries up to 13 December 2018, with an additional 580 human cases reported by EU neighbouring countries.
According to new data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), a total of 2,083 cases of autochthonous infections have been reported in 2018, which significantly exceeds the total number from the previous seven years when 1,832 cases were reported. The ECDC said compared to the previous transmission season in 2017, there was a 7.2-fold increase in cases this year. A total of 181 deaths due to West Nile virus infection have been reported by Greece, Italy, Romania, Serbia, Kosovo, Turkey, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and Hungary.
According to the authority, all mosquito-borne autochthonous human cases during the current transmission season were reported in previously affected countries. The highest increase compared to the previous transmission season was observed in Bulgaria (15-fold) followed by France (13.5-fold) and Italy (10.9-fold).
No new human West Nile virus infections were reported by EU Member States between 7 and 13 December, however, one case was reported by Turkey.