Human death toll from goat disease Q fever rises to 74

Flu thermometer.The Q fever epidemic which hit the Netherlands in 2007 and ended in 2011 left 74 people dead, the official foundation supporting victims of the disease said on Tuesday.

Until now the official total has been 26, but the Q-support foundation says that 65 people died from a chronic variety of the disease and had the bacteria in their bodies when they died.

The foundation’s director Annemieke de Groot told news agency ANP doctors must remain alert to the symptoms of acute Q fever, and that it is still a killer.

The sheep and goat disease epidemic cost the Netherlands between €161m and €336m, according to a report drawn up for Noord-Brabant province at the time.

Q fever was a serious problem on Dutch goat farms, mainly in Brabant, between 2007 and 2011. Over 40,000 goats were killed in an effort to eradicate the disease.

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