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More cases of salmonella and measles confirmed by officials

February 17, 2008
The Maui News
HONOLULU (AP) — Yet another case of salmonella has turned up on Oahu, while health officials confirm a second case of measles this month.

The Salmonella Paratyphi B infection was related to eating raw tuna, the state Department of Health said.

The sick person reported eating ahi poke purchased at a market on Oahu, health officials said.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is conducting a product trace to determine the source of the salmonella contamination.

Since October, the Health Department has identified 34 confirmed cases of Salmonella Paratyphi B infection on Oahu. Health officials identified raw imported frozen ahi used in ahi poke as a possible source of illness.

Additional cases in California and Colorado prompted the federal investigation.

‘‘The Department of Health is concerned about these continuing cases, and with the help of the FDA we hope to identify the source so we can prevent any further illness,’’ said Dr. Paul Effler, state epidemiologist with the Department of Health.

Meanwhile, the Health Department reported Saturday that it had confirmed a case of measles in an adult who traveled to Europe and returned to Honolulu by way of San Francisco on Feb. 5.

The patient was highly contagious Feb. 6 to Thursday, and the department was identifying and notifying contacts of possible exposure.

‘‘Measles is rarely seen in the U.S. today because of school vaccination requirements, but in other parts of the world the illness is more common,’’ Effler said.

‘‘Since vaccination for measles begins between 12 and 15 months, we are particularly concerned about infants under the age of 15 months without vaccination who may have been exposed,’’ he said.

Earlier this month, health officials tried to contact 240 passengers onboard an airplane who unwittingly flew with a measles-infected baby from the Mainland to Honolulu.

The 10-month-old infant had been exposed to a confirmed case of measles at a medical clinic in San Diego late last month.


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