Shigella Isolates 2020

Wednesday 22nd March 2023


The year 2020 has been unusual at best for everyone and the enteric data for 2020 will always stand apart from other years due the multiple effects of our COVID 19 response on our national data.

When NZ locked down at the end of March 2020, diagnostic laboratories staff and resources were given over to the task of establishing and performing testing for COVID 19. Therefore diagnostic laboratories were actively discouraging referral of other, more routine work. This coupled with people staying home in small bubbles; not eating out; and not being able to readily access face-to-face medical assistance meant that for a period of two months there were very few enteric pathogens received at ESR for typing.

Once NZ moved back to Alert Level 2, enteric testing and isolate referral gradually recommenced. However, with our borders remaining closed for the remainder of the year we have seen an ongoing reduction in Shigella case numbers compared with previous years. Given all of the above the low numbers noted for the year suggest that Shigella infection is more associated with overseas travel than previously thought – just 12 isolates were received between June and December 2020 compared with 97 isolates for the same time period in 2019.

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Shigella Isolates 2020



Shigella Isolates 2020

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