NEWS SCAN: E coli probe of Egyptian seeds, Czech mumps outbreak

Aug 23, 2011

EU officials look for E coli outbreak clues in Egypt
Officials from the European Union and the World Health Organization (WHO) yesterday began a 5-day tour of Egyptian farms to investigate a link between the EU Escherichia coli O104:H4 outbreak and imported fenugreek seeds used in sprouts and sprout mixes, Bikya Masr, an Egyptian news outlet reported yesterday. Ali Suleimin, an Egyptian agriculture official, said at a press conference yesterday that the international group will visit Minya, Fayoum, and Beni Suef governorates and file initial reports after each visit. In the wake of the E coli infections, the European Union banned Egyptian sprout seeds, and Egypt has denied that the seeds were contaminated. The visit was delayed due to negotiations between Egypt and EU officials, according to European food safety experts who spoke with Food Safety News.
Aug 23 Food Safety News report

Czech mumps outbreak prompts vaccine protection questions
A Czech Republic mumps outbreak in teenagers that was centered in the country's Bohemia region has prompted health officials to consider revaccinating the age-group, Czech News Agency (CNA) reported yesterday. From January through April authorities recorded 996 mumps cases, mainly in young people ages 14 through 19. In response to the outbreak the health ministry provided vaccine for 11,832 children in the area, according to the report. Czech youngsters are typically vaccinated at 15 months and 3 years, but Michael Vit, the country's chief health inspector, told CNA that he wants to conduct an immunological survey to determine if the age-group should have a booster to strengthen their immunity against mumps. In the United States children are given two doses of measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, the first one soon after their first birthday and the second before they start kindergarten.

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