Andy Gammill at the Indianapolis Star reports a new strategy is underway in the Hoosier State’s capital city to combat the ongoing outbreak of shigella. He reports that:
Ten months and 500 cases into a shigella outbreak, health officials are visiting every licensed child-care center in Indianapolis in a new effort to stop the spread of the bacterial infection.
The Marion County Health Department hasn’t had much success, despite asking doctors to test for shigella even when they don’t suspect it and visiting schools and child-care centers where infected children have been.
We’ve tried so many things," said Shandy Dearth, an epidemiologist with the department.
The visiting health workers will conduct on-site checks to see if child-care centers are as clean as they should be, Dearth said, and will teach staff and children about proper hand-washing techniques.
At least 70 child-care centers and 84 schools have reported at least one case of shigella since Sept. 23, 2007, when the outbreak began. Shigella is a bacterial infection transmitted by contact with feces, including small amounts not visible to the naked eye.
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