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Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama: 10 hospitalizations, 2 deaths - multiple pathogens detected, including influenza A/H1N1, influenza A/H3, and rhinovirus

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  • Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama: 10 hospitalizations, 2 deaths - multiple pathogens detected, including influenza A/H1N1, influenza A/H3, and rhinovirus

    [Source: Alabama Department of Health, full PDF document: (LINK). Edited.]


    NEWS RELEASE / ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH, RSA Tower 201 Monroe Street, Suite 914 Montgomery, AL 36104, Phone 334-206-5300 Fax 334-206-5520, www.adph.org


    Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


    CONTACT: Mary McIntyre, M.D., M.P.H., (206-5325


    The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) and the Houston County Health Department, in consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are investigating a cluster of respiratory illnesses of unknown origin in southeast Alabama.

    Seven people have been admitted to a hospital with fever, cough and shortness of breath.

    Two of the seven have died.

    Laboratory samples have been obtained from all patients. Laboratory testing continues at both ADPH Bureau of Clinical Laboratories and CDC’s Respiratory Laboratory. ADPH and CDC have recommended the hospital use respiratory precautions, which include staff using N95 masks when caring for patients presenting with respiratory symptoms.

    If you or your family members have respiratory symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath, please contact your health care provider to be evaluated.


    -30- 5/21/13

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  • #2
    Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

    http://www.dothaneagle.com/news/arti...9bb30f31a.html
    Two dead, others sick locally from unknown illness
    Posted: Tuesday, May 21, 2013 11:37 am

    Posted on May 21, 2013

    Matt Elofson


    Seven people have been admitted to area hospitals, and two of them have died, in what health officials described Tuesday a “cluster” of respiratory illnesses with flulike symptoms.

    Of the seven people, two have died and the other five remain hospitalized, one in an intensive care unit. No specific hospitals were named.
    click here!

    The illnesses date back as far as April 19 and to as recent as Monday...
    “‘i love myself.’ the quietest. simplest. most powerful. revolution ever.” ---- nayyirah waheed

    Avatar: Franz Marc, Liegender Hund im Schnee 1911 (My posts are not intended as advice or professional assessments of any kind.)

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

      Source: WSFA.com: http://www.wsfa.com/story/22313426/u...theast-alabama


      Unknown respiratory illness threatens Southeast Alabama

      Posted: May 21, 2013 7:05 PM Updated: May 21, 2013 7:45 PM

      HOUSTON CO., AL (WSFA) - Two Alabama residents have died from a respiratory illness that doctors and health officials have been unable to explain.

      (...)


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      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

        WARNING: Not confirmed information!

        '''A person with knowledge of the situation, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said some of the cases could be linked to Orlando. At least one of the people who died is believed to have recently worked in the Florida city.''

        [21:59:57] Giuseppe Michieli: http://dothanfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=273702

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

          Originally posted by giuseppe michieli View Post
          warning: Not confirmed information!

          '''a person with knowledge of the situation, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said some of the cases could be linked to orlando. At least one of the people who died is believed to have recently worked in the florida city.''

          [21:59:57] giuseppe michieli: http://dothanfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=273702
          Name:  16d1edc59c0a472241f1353ff715af69.jpg
Views: 1
Size:  13.5 KB

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

            From: FluTrackers <flutrackers@earthlink.net>
            To: Dain Weister <Dain_Weister@DOH.state.fl.us>
            Subject: Alabama respiratory cluster supposedly linked to Orlando
            Date: May 21, 2013 4:29 PM

            Dain -

            Can you comment on this - something I can publish? I need it now as this is a developing story:

            http://www.dothaneagle.com/news/arti...9bb30f31a.html

            "A person with knowledge of the situation, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said some of the cases could be linked to Orlando. At least one of the people who died is believed to have recently worked in the Florida city."

            Our thread on this:

            http://www.flutrackers.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=206175




            My official question is:

            Does the Orange County public health department know of any respiratory illnesses, and or clusters, that are of unknown or known origin? If so, what types of respiratory illnesses are currently circulating in the Orange county/Orlando area? In particular - are there any persons who are diagnosed or have been treated for any respiratory illnesses of novel type disease?


            Thanks,

            Sharon Sanders
            Editor-in-Chief
            FluTrackers.com
            "May the long time sun
            Shine upon you,
            All love surround you,
            And the pure light within you
            Guide your way on."

            "Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, lies your calling."
            Aristotle

            “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”
            Mohandas Gandhi

            Be the light that is within.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

              Dain Weister is the Communications Manager at Florida Department of Health, Orange and Seminole Counties
              "May the long time sun
              Shine upon you,
              All love surround you,
              And the pure light within you
              Guide your way on."

              "Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, lies your calling."
              Aristotle

              “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”
              Mohandas Gandhi

              Be the light that is within.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                http://dothanfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=273812
                Latest: Two Dead, Five Sick From Unknown Illness
                By: Ken Curtis
                Updated: May 21, 2013
                [snip]
                The illness is not believed related to an avian flu outbreak that has killed 131 people in China. Smith wouldn't speculate whether the Alabama cases could be the H1N1 virus, commonly called swine flu.
                The 2 deaths were in the 30's to 40's age range.
                Last edited by Emily; May 21st, 2013, 03:07 PM. Reason: Fixed quote
                “‘i love myself.’ the quietest. simplest. most powerful. revolution ever.” ---- nayyirah waheed

                Avatar: Franz Marc, Liegender Hund im Schnee 1911 (My posts are not intended as advice or professional assessments of any kind.)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                  Originally posted by Emily View Post
                  http://dothanfirst.com/fulltext?nxd_id=273812


                  The 2 deaths were in the 30's to 40's age range.
                  This update also says that all of the affected live in Alabama. So was the Orlando, Florida mention just an unfounded rumour, or what?
                  "May the long time sun
                  Shine upon you,
                  All love surround you,
                  And the pure light within you
                  Guide your way on."

                  "Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, lies your calling."
                  Aristotle

                  “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”
                  Mohandas Gandhi

                  Be the light that is within.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                    Originally posted by sharon sanders View Post
                    From: FluTrackers <flutrackers@earthlink.net>
                    To: Dain Weister <Dain_Weister@DOH.state.fl.us>
                    Subject: Alabama respiratory cluster supposedly linked to Orlando
                    Date: May 21, 2013 4:29 PM

                    Dain -

                    Can you comment on this - something I can publish? I need it now as this is a developing story:

                    http://www.dothaneagle.com/news/arti...9bb30f31a.html

                    "A person with knowledge of the situation, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said some of the cases could be linked to Orlando. At least one of the people who died is believed to have recently worked in the Florida city."

                    Our thread on this:

                    http://www.flutrackers.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=206175




                    My official question is:

                    Does the Orange County public health department know of any respiratory illnesses, and or clusters, that are of unknown or known origin? If so, what types of respiratory illnesses are currently circulating in the Orange county/Orlando area? In particular - are there any persons who are diagnosed or have been treated for any respiratory illnesses of novel type disease?


                    Thanks,

                    Sharon Sanders
                    Editor-in-Chief
                    FluTrackers.com


                    Dain responded:

                    "Nothing reported to us like this.

                    We are at a mild designation for flu cases.

                    All I know at this point. I'm inquiring further."
                    "May the long time sun
                    Shine upon you,
                    All love surround you,
                    And the pure light within you
                    Guide your way on."

                    "Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, lies your calling."
                    Aristotle

                    “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”
                    Mohandas Gandhi

                    Be the light that is within.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                      Originally posted by sharon sanders View Post
                      From: FluTrackers <flutrackers@earthlink.net>
                      To: Dain Weister <Dain_Weister@DOH.state.fl.us>
                      Subject: Alabama respiratory cluster supposedly linked to Orlando
                      Date: May 21, 2013 4:29 PM

                      Dain -

                      Can you comment on this - something I can publish? I need it now as this is a developing story:

                      http://www.dothaneagle.com/news/arti...9bb30f31a.html

                      "A person with knowledge of the situation, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said some of the cases could be linked to Orlando. At least one of the people who died is believed to have recently worked in the Florida city."

                      Our thread on this:

                      http://www.flutrackers.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=206175




                      My official question is:

                      Does the Orange County public health department know of any respiratory illnesses, and or clusters, that are of unknown or known origin? If so, what types of respiratory illnesses are currently circulating in the Orange county/Orlando area? In particular - are there any persons who are diagnosed or have been treated for any respiratory illnesses of novel type disease?


                      Thanks,

                      Sharon Sanders
                      Editor-in-Chief
                      FluTrackers.com

                      Further response from Dain:

                      "There is no Epidemiological link to our area at this point, and no spike in any kind of cases like that here."
                      "May the long time sun
                      Shine upon you,
                      All love surround you,
                      And the pure light within you
                      Guide your way on."

                      "Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, lies your calling."
                      Aristotle

                      “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”
                      Mohandas Gandhi

                      Be the light that is within.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                        Thank you Sharon for asking. (And Dain Weister for responding so quickly.)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                          Alabama Department of Public Health outbreak investigations link:

                          http://www.adph.org/epi/Default.asp?id=5548

                          Note the investigations into unknown GI and Respiratory Cases at bottom of list for 2013.

                          ________________


                          Alabama Department of Public Health Influenza Graph Link:

                          http://www.adph.org/Influenza/assets...Lpositives.pdf

                          Note there have been no positive influenza specimens reported since what looks like 4/20/13. And prior to that the few positives were Influenza B.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths

                            http://vitals.nbcnews.com/_news/2013...ma-2-dead?lite

                            Mysterious respiratory illness strikes 7 in Alabama; 2 deadBy JoNel Aleccia, Senior Writer, NBC News
                            Two people have died and five others have been hospitalized in a mysterious cluster of respiratory illnesses in southeast Alabama, state health officials said.

                            The victims, all adults, had symptoms including fever, cough and shortness of breath, but the cause of the illnesses is unknown, said Dr. Mary McIntyre, the acting state epidemiologist for the Alabama Department of Public Health. The hospital is using respiratory precautions, which include requiring staff to wear special N95 masks that reduce the chance of infection.

                            State health officials have collected and analyzed samples of specimens from all patients. So far, one sample has tested positive for H1N1 influenza A, but it's not clear that that is behind the unusual illnesses. There's no evidence of other kinds of flu, including the H7N9 strain that has caused illness and death in China, McIntyre said.

                            Laboratory samples have been sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but testing results are not yet available, officials said.

                            There's no evidence that any of the victims had a connection or traveled outside the country, which would have put them at risk for unusual pathogens, including a deadly new coronavirus recently christened MERS or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome.

                            "At this point it's too early to tell," McIntyre told NBC News. "That's why we called it a respiratory illness of unknown origin."

                            State and federal health officials will continue to investigate the illnesses.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Increase in respiratory illness reported in southeast Alabama (Health Dept., May 21 2013): 7 cases, 2 deaths -at least one case positive for H1N1

                              So it's not a cluster in the traditional sense, only a geographical one:

                              http://www.wsfa.com/story/22313426/m...lizes-5-others

                              [snip]

                              ADPH was general in its statement about the locations of those affect, calling the area affected "Southeast Alabama". A news conference covered by the Dothan Eagle cited an official who said all seven patients came from the eight-county service area including Barbour, Coffee, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike counties.


                              Samples have been taken from the patients and will be examined at the ADPH Bureau of Clinical Laboratories and the CDC Respiratory Laboratory.

                              So far none of those affected by the mystery illness appear to be connected to each other and there's no indication that any had recently traveled outside the country.

                              Comment

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