Objective: To monitor the incidence of neonatal herpes in The Netherlands between 2006 and 2011, as well as the adherence to the rather conservative Dutch prevention policy. Methods: Questionnaires were sent to all virology laboratories (n = 44), gynaecology and paediatrics departments of all hospitals in The Netherlands (n = 89). Questionnaires for the laboratories pertained to rates of proven cases of neonatal herpes; for the gynaecologists and paediatricians it pertained to rates of genital herpes during pregnancy and neonatal herpes, and their policy. For gynaecologists this concerned the risk of herpes simplex virus transmission in case of primary genital herpes during pregnancy or labour; for paediatricians it concerned the diagnostic policy in a neonate suspected of neonatal herpes. Results: For the period 2006-2011 38 cases of neonatal herpes were reported, yielding an incidence of 4.7 per 100 000 births. The estimated annual number of pregnant women with primary or recurrent genital herpes was 278. Of the responding gynaecologists and paediatricians, only 59% and up to 39%, respectively, reported a policy in accordance with the national guideline. Conclusions: The incidence of neonatal herpes in The Netherlands seems to have increased in the period 2006-2011. Combined with suboptimal guideline adherence this warrants strategies to improve awareness and subsequent adherence.

Herpes neonatorum, Herpes simplex, Monitoring, Neonatal, Pregnancy, The Netherlands
dx.doi.org/10.3109/14767058.2014.937691, hdl.handle.net/1765/88939
The Journal of Maternal - Fetal & Neonatal Medicine
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Hemelaar, S.J.A.L, Poeran, V.J.J, Steegers, E.A.P, & van der Meijden, W.I. (2015). Neonatal herpes infections in the Netherlands in the period 2006-2011. The Journal of Maternal - Fetal & Neonatal Medicine, 28(8), 905–909. doi:10.3109/14767058.2014.937691