IATA Medical Contact Group - COVID-19, Monkeypox, other outbreaks

COVID-19:

There are declining hospitalisations and deaths in Japan and South Korea now, along with most locations.  Still surging cases in Russia, and lockdowns in China to control local outbreaks.

A useful summary article from NEJM on Immunity, Variants and Boosters is here – D Barouch:  https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMra2206573

There is an “EPI-WIN” webinar tomorrow “BA.5 What do we know about new variants?” which will be watchable afterwards on the WHO  EPI-WIN YouTube channel.

 Monkeypox:  

The first monkeypox-related death in the United States has been reported in an individual described by officials as "severely immunocompromised" according to Airfinity;  global cases have gone beyond 50,000 now.  However as noted earlier the growth in global cases appears to be on the decline.  UK HSA reported a second strain of monkeypox in the UK, in one person who recently travelled to West Africa. 

Other:

You may have seen news reports of a worrying cluster of atypical pneumonia cases connected to a healthcare facility in Argentina – there were initially nine cases (later 11) and three fatalities (see for example https://www.lemonde.fr/en/international/article/2022/09/02/mysterious-pneumonia-kills-three-in-argentina_5995580_4.html) – and there were concerns that this may be due to a novel organism. However over the weekend, four of the cases tested positive for Legionella species, which are not transmitted directly from person to person but are found in contaminated water and potting mixes.  Infection can occur from contaminated building air conditioning systems of certain types.  Full details published by the WHO are here: https://www.who.int/emergencies/disease-outbreak-news/item/2022-DON407#

Best wishes,
David Powell

IATA Medical Advisor