The once-rare type of enterovirus that has landed hundreds if not thousands of children in the hospital with acute respiratory problems has spread coast to coast to 22 states, up from 6 just a week ago, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
For all its explosive growth, enterovirus-D68 (EV-D68) has not resulted in any deaths. That is one positive. Another positive, according to 2 infectious disease experts, is that the nation’s public health infrastructure has been able to handle the outbreak.
It was just 11 days ago that the CDC announced that it had confirmed 30 cases of EV-D68 at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, and Comer Children’s Hospital. Most of the children had a history of asthma or wheezing, and most were treated in the intensive care unit, some with mechanical ventilation and continuous positive airway pressure, according to the agency.
By September 12, the case count had risen to 97 confirmed cases in Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, and Missouri. Today, the CDC’s running total reached 160 cases in 22 states. The additional 16 states are Alabama, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington.
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