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In July 2001, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (Folkehelseinstituttet, FHI) reported a cluster of Salmonella Enteritidis of phage type 14b infections in Norwegian travellers returning from Greece. An increase in the same uncommon phage type was also registered in Sweden and Finland at the same time. Cases of S. Enteritidis PT 14b in patients returning from Greece were reported in these three Nordic countries in 2001 (303 cases), 2002 (164 cases) and 2003 (199 cases). Case-control studies performed in 2001 in Norway and Sweden indicated that consumption of chicken was associated with illness. In 2002 and 2003, continuing case reports indicated that this uncommon phage type had probably become established in the Greek food chain. Tour operators were informed and contacts were made with Greek public health authorities. Because place of infection is not systematically included in most Salmonella notification systems, the S. Enteritidis phage type 14b outbreak reported here may represent only part of a larger outbreak among travellers visiting Greece. Infections are often reported only in the tourists' home countries and public health authorities in the tourist destinations may not be aware of the problem. Further collaboration between national institutes of public health in Europe is needed to detect outbreaks occurring among tourists.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Euro surveillance : bulletin europeen sur les maladies transmissibles = european communicable disease bulletin

Publication Date

01/2006

Volume

11

Pages

61 - 66

Addresses

Division of Infectious Disease Control, Norwegian Institute of Public Health FHI, Oslo, Norway.

Keywords

Animals, Chickens, Humans, Salmonella enteritidis, Salmonella Food Poisoning, Bacteriophage Typing, Population Surveillance, Case-Control Studies, Disease Outbreaks, Travel, Meat, Adult, Finland, Greece, Norway, Sweden, Female, Male