news desk @infectiousdiseasenews
the Shigella outbreak reported in October 2021 in San Diego County among people experiencing homelessness is over, officials said Friday.
The last case of shigella linked to the outbreak was identified on December 11, 2021, and for more than a month cases have remained at the historical baseline, which is no more than one case per week among homeless people.
A total of 53 shigella cases were linked to the outbreak – 47 confirmed infections and six probable infections. All cases were identified in homeless people. There were no deaths.
Forty-four (44) cases report substance use, 38 are known to use methamphetamine.
The county’s ongoing disease investigation efforts will continue to monitor shigellosis cases and potential outbreaks in the area, providing early intervention if needed.
shigella is a bacterium that causes a disease called shigellosis. Children under the age of 5 are most susceptible to getting shigellosis, but people of all age groups can get this disease. Most people with shigellosis will get better in 5 to 7 days without medical treatment. However, shigella bacteria can cause more serious illness in infants, the elderly, or people whose immune systems have been weakened by cancer, cancer treatments, or other serious conditions (such as diabetes, kidney failure, liver disease and HIV/AIDS).
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shigella bacteria can spread very easily from person to person, so the best thing you can do to avoid getting sick is to wash your hands with soap and water, especially after using the toilet, after after changing a child’s diapers and before preparing food and eating.
If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol (check the product label to be sure). A hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol is effective in killing shigella bacteria. But use soap and water as soon as possible afterwards, as hand sanitizer doesn’t kill all types of germs and may not work as well if hands are visibly oily or dirty.