Communicable Diseases Surveillance - Highlights

This report published in Communicable Diseases Intelligence Volume 24, No 2, 17 February 2000 contains an analysis and tables of monthly notifiable diseases and laboratory data, and quarterly surveillance reports.

Page last updated: 17 February 2000

A print friendly PDF version is available from this Communicable Diseases Intelligence issue's table of contents.

Communicable Diseases Surveillance consists of data from various sources. The National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System (NNDSS) is conducted under the auspices of the Communicable Diseases Network Australia New Zealand. The Virology and Serology Laboratory Reporting Scheme (LabVISE) is a sentinel surveillance scheme. The Australian Sentinel Practice Research Network (ASPREN) is a general practitioner-based sentinel surveillance scheme. In this report, data from the NNDSS are referred to as 'notifications' or 'cases', whereas those from ASPREN are referred to as 'consultations' or 'encounters' while data from the LabVISE scheme are referred to as 'laboratory reports'.

Vaccine preventable diseases

A total of 467 notifications was received in this reporting period, which is an increase on the previous reporting period (332), and similar to the same period in 1999 (427). The increase in notifications was the result of continuing pertussis activity in most States and Territories. The number of pertussis notifications was 419 over this period compared with 304 in the previous period. In this 4 week period increases were seen in the number of notified cases in Queensland (a 164% increase, from 44 to 116 cases) and New South Wales (a 93% increase, from 74 to 143 cases), and there was a 55% decrease (from 87 to 39 cases) in the number of notified cases from Tasmania. There was no increase in the number of notifications of other vaccine preventable diseases.

Vectorborne diseases

There was a 211% increase in notifications of Ross River virus infection this period (from 135 to 420), but this is less than the number of notifications for the same period in 1999 (444). The greatest number of notifications was received from Queensland (228 cases, a 744% increase from 27 last period); followed by Western Australia (113 cases, a 53% increase from 74 last period). The number of year to date notifications (442) was similar to last year (454).

A 300% increase in dengue notifications was noted in this reporting period (from 9 to 36 cases). Sixty-nine per cent of cases (25) were from the Northern Territory and 30% from Queensland (9). This reflects the importation of dengue from East Timor into the Northern Territory and local transmission in Far North Queensland.

Gastrointestinal diseases

There continued to be increased numbers of notifications of hepatitis A during this period, with a 52% increase from last period (75 to 114). Most cases (31, 27%) were from Victoria, followed by New South Wales (28, 24%) then Western Australia (22, 19%). The year to date number of notifications (120) was less than that for last year (151).

One case of haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) was reported in this period, from New South Wales.

This article was published in Communicable Diseases Intelligence Volume 24, No 2, 17 February 2000.

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This issue - Vol 24, No 2, 17 February 2000