Health agency probes E coli out­break in po­lyg­a­mist Utah

Kuwait Times - - HEALTH & SCIENCE -

Utah health au­thor­i­ties said they are in­ves­ti­gat­ing an out­break of E coli af­ter two chil­dren died in a city on the Ari­zona bor­der that’s home to a po­lyg­a­mist Mor­mon sect. The in­ves­ti­ga­tion in Hildale, Utah, comes af­ter the deaths in re­cent weeks, the South­west Utah Pub­lic Health Depart­ment told the Salt Lake Tri­bune. The cause and num­ber of E coli cases was not avail­able, said David Heaton, an of­fi­cial at the depart­ment.

The agency does not con­sider the town at large to be at risk, the Tri­bune re­ported. “All the wa­ter testing we’ve done in Hildale has been clean,” Heaton said, “so we’re fo­cus­ing all our ef­forts on con­tam­i­nated food or ex­po­sure to an­i­mals.” The depart­ment is look­ing at one lo­ca­tion, he said, de­clin­ing to iden­tify it be­cause of the on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

E coli can cause diar­rhea, cramps, nausea, headaches or other symp­toms. It has been a while since there’s been an out­break of E coli in south­ern Utah, Heaton said, adding that there have been in­di­vid­ual cases. Hildale and ad­ja­cent Colorado City, Ari­zona, have been dom­i­nated for decades by mem­bers of the polyg­a­mous Fun­da­men­tal­ist Church of Lat­ter-Day Saints.—AP

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