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Annual European CDC Report Says Infectious Diseases, Drug Resistance Are Concerns

“Europe’s health is suffering, with around 80,000 cases of tuberculosis infection a year and serious problems with measles, HIV and threats from ‘superbug’ infections, an annual health report” from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said Thursday, Reuters reports. The report said infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance, especially multi-drug resistance, are major concerns, according to the news service. The “report also identified several emergent diseases in Europe it said might pose a risk to public health,” including West Nile virus, malaria, dengue fever and chikungunya, Reuters notes.

In the forward of the report, ECDC Director Marc Sprenger writes, “The biggest threat we face is complacency about infectious diseases. The attitude that the battle against infectious diseases has been won must be continuously challenged,” according to Reuters. “The 2011 report is based on data from 2009 and 2010 … but officials said the picture it paints is one that has changed little. If anything, things appear to have gotten worse,” the news agency writes (Kelland, 11/10).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.