2 dead from Ecoli out­break in Utah polyg­a­mous com­mu­nity

Kuwait Times - - HEALTH & SCIENCE -

SALT LAKE CITY: Utah health au­thor­i­ties were in­ves­ti­gat­ing Mon­day what trig­gered an Ecoli out­break in a mostly-polyg­a­mous com­mu­nity on the Utah-Ari­zona bor­der af­ter the bac­te­ria killed two chil­dren and sick­ened four oth­ers. Early in­di­ca­tions sug­gest the Ecoli may be linked to con­tam­i­nated food or ex­po­sure to an­i­mals - not the town of Hil­dale’s wa­ter sup­ply, said David Heaton, spokesman for the South­west Utah Public Health De­part­ment. He said it ap­pears iso­lated to one neigh­bor­hood.

Heaton said he can’t re­leases the names or ages of the de­ceased chil­dren, or say if they are re­lated, due to pri­vacy con­cerns. He said they died in the past two weeks af­ter get­ting hemolytic ure­mic syn­drome, also known as HUS, which causes kid­ney dam­age. Ecoli can cause di­ar­rhea, cramps, nau­sea, headaches or other symp­toms. Utah De­part­ment of Health spokes­woman Jenny John­son said deaths from E.coli are pretty rare with an av­er­age of only one per­son a year dy­ing from the ill­ness in Utah, a state of about 3 mil­lion peo­ple. There are 80 to 100 cases per year in Utah of a strain of Ecoli that have a toxin called Shiga that makes peo­ple sick, John­son said.

The four other peo­ple who came down with Ecoli in Hil­dale are chil­dren and adults but Heaton didn’t have the ex­act break­down. He de­clined to re­lease their con­di­tions but said they’ve all re­ceived med­i­cal care. The sis­ter towns of Hil­dale, Utah and Colorado City, Ari­zona, are home to a polyg­a­mous group known as the Fun­da­men­tal­ist Church of Je­sus Christ of Lat­ter-Day Saints. It is a rad­i­cal off­shoot of main­stream Mor­monism, which dis­avowed polygamy more than 100 years ago.—AP

COLORADO CITY: This file photo shows Hil­dale, Utah, sit­ting at the base of Red Rock Cliff moun­tains, with its sis­ter city, Colorado City, Ariz, in the fore­ground.—AP

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