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Euro Surveill. 2018 Sep;23(38). doi: 10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2018.23.38.1800486.

Outbreak of human leptospirosis linked to contaminated water bodies in Northern Israel, June to August 2018.

Author information

1
These authors contributed equally to the study.
2
The Division of Epidemiology, Public Health Services, Ministry of Health, Jerusalem, Israel.
3
Ministry of Health Directorate, Jerusalem, Israel.
4
School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel.
5
Public Health Services, Ministry of Health, Jerusalem, Israel.
6
Braun School of Public Health and Community Medicine, Hebrew University and Hadassah, Jerusalem, Israel.
7
Israel Institute for Biological Research, Ness Ziona, Israel.
8
Northern District, Ministry of Health, Israel.
9
Public Health Branch, IDF Medical Corps, Israel.
10
Nature and Parks Authority, Jerusalem, Israel.
11
Mekorot Central Laboratory, Eshkol Site, National Water Company, Israel.
12
Israeli Veterinary Services, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Beit Dagan, Israel.
13
Hadassah Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel.
14
Jerusalem District, Clalit Health Services, Jerusalem, Israel.
15
Public Health Laboratory, Haifa District, Ministry of Health, Haifa, Israel.

Abstract

We report preliminary findings of a large outbreak of human leptospirosis with 36 confirmed/probable and 583 suspected cases from June-August 2018, linked to contaminated water bodies in Northern Israel. There was a travel-associated case in Germany; additional cases are being investigated in other countries. The presumed chain of transmission, implicating wild boar and cattle, raises multiple challenges for risk assessment, risk management and risk communication currently being addressed by a public health response team.

KEYWORDS:

climate change; contamination; leptospirosis; outbreak investigation; travel; waterborne

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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