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Epidemic Hazard - North-America - USA

EDIS Number: EH-20111123-33131-USA
Date / time: 23/11/2011 04:14:05 [UTC]
Event: Epidemic Hazard
Area: North-America
Country: USA
State/County: State of Massachusetts
Location: Boston [Boston Latin Academy]
Number of Deads: N/A
Number of Injured: N/A
Number of Infected: N/A
Number of Missing: N/A
Number of Affected: N/A
Number of Evacuated: N/A
Damage level: N/A

Description:

A series of meningitis infections have appeared in various areas of Massachusetts. An unnamed seventh-grade student at Boston Latin Academy died today from a probable case of bacterial meningitis, as well as 64-year old Russell Marcoux, the town manager of Bedford, on November 10. A staff member of Hopedale Junior-Senior High also fell ill on November 17, but appears to be doing well. Health commission officials have concluded that there are less than fifty people at the Boston Latin Academy who came in contact enough with the 12-year old girl to have possibly contracted the infection, and have advised anyone who spent extended amounts of time with her to visit their doctor. Dr. Anita Barry, the director of the Infectious Disease Bureau at the health commission, said “We consider close contact to be someone who was within 3 to 6 feet for at least an hour duration. It’s not someone who happened to walk past”. Meanwhile, in Bedford, N.H., town official Russell Marcoux was hospitalized on October 31 at Elliot hospital in Manchester. Cause of his contraction of the illness is unknown, though it is believed that it was not contagious. Also, parents of students at Hopedale Junior-Senior High have been contacted after a staff member fell ill, but state health officials say that the chances of the infection spreading are slim. Meningitis can be transferred through contact with saliva, but can be avoided with a vaccine that prevents three strains of the virus. Symptoms, according to Mayo Clinic, include high fever, severe headaches, stiff neck, vomiting or nausea, difficulty concentrating, sleepiness, and sensitivity to light.


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Volcano Eruption - South-America - Chile

EDIS Number: VE-20111123-33129-CHL
Date / time: 23/11/2011 04:09:58 [UTC]
Event: Volcano Eruption
Area: South-America
Country: Chile
State/County: Ranco Province
Location: [Puyehue-Cordón Caulle Volcanic Complex (PCCVC)]
Number of Deads: N/A
Number of Injured: N/A
Number of Infected: N/A
Number of Missing: N/A
Number of Affected: N/A
Number of Evacuated: N/A
Damage level: N/A

Description:

Flights were cancelled for several hours in Uruguay and Argentina on Tuesday due to volcanic ash from the four-month-long eruption of the Puyehue volcano in Chile, airport authorities said. Laura Vanoli, Uruguay's chief aeronautic meteorologist, said the country was almost entirely covered by an ash cloud. 'It's remnants of ash,' she said, adding that there will be a risk of disruption as long as the volcano remains active. About a dozen flights by airlines including Aerolineas Argentinas, American, Iberia and TACA were suspended in Uruguay, while other flights were delayed, the website of the Carrasco International Airport serving Montevideo said.


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Epidemic Hazard - North-America - USA

EDIS Number: EH-20111123-33128-USA
Date / time: 23/11/2011 04:05:14 [UTC]
Event: Epidemic Hazard
Area: North-America
Country: USA
State/County: State of Indiana
Location: Lakeville [Laville Elementary School 12645 Tyler Road]
Number of Deads: N/A
Number of Injured: N/A
Number of Infected: N/A
Number of Missing: N/A
Number of Affected: N/A
Number of Evacuated: N/A
Damage level: N/A

Description:

While it may be flu season, there's another virus that has made one school take immediate action. LaVille Elementary School, in Lakeville, Ind., has eight confirmed cases of chicken pox. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), five or more cases qualify as an “outbreak.” Now, the school’s goal is to keep this outbreak contained and make sure the rest of their students are pox-free. They are requiring that all students provide proof that they are up-to-date on their chicken pox vaccines in order to be allowed into class. The school’s principal said that he has not seen a situation like this before. “This is the most we've ever had and I’ve been here almost twenty years,” Principal John Farthing said. The school has set up a free vaccine clinic with help from the Marshall and St. Joseph Counties Health Departments. On Tuesday, they provided more than 100 children with vaccines Tuesday. “The majority of the kids we’ve seen have had one vaccination before, some have never received the vaccine,” said Susan Lechlitner, public health nurse for the Marshall County Health Department. Parents like Dalana Barger said the on-site clinic makes it easier to ensure kids aren't susceptible to chicken pox. “I was glad this was here. I didn’t have to call her doctor and rush around,” she said. The Marshall County Health Department plans to be at the school Wednesday administering more vaccines.

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Volcano Eruption - Middle-America - Guatemala

EDIS Number: VE-20111122-33123-GTM
Date / time: 22/11/2011 11:47:07 [UTC]
Event: Volcano Eruption
Area: Middle-America
Country: Guatemala
State/County: Sierra Madre
Location: [Volcán de Fuego]
Number of Deads: N/A
Number of Injured: N/A
Number of Infected: N/A
Number of Missing: N/A
Number of Affected: N/A
Number of Evacuated: N/A
Damage level: N/A

Description:

The Guatemalan geophysical survey SERNAGEOMIN reports increasing explosive activity from Fuego volcano, one of the country's most active volcanoes. Fuego was observed producing ash clouds reaching 1500-2000 m above the summit crater (at ca. 3600 m altitude) which drifted SW and reached up to 20 km distance where they produced some ash fall, reported in the communities of Panimach�, Morelia, Sangre de Cristo, and Santa Sof�a. The explosions were accompanied by moderate to strong booming noises and shock waves that could be felt in up to 15 km distance. Near-constant rock avalanches are observed on the upper slopes beneath the summit crater, some of which reach the vegetated areas.

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Epidemic Hazard - Africa - Kenya

EDIS Number: EH-20111122-33122-KEN
Date / time: 22/11/2011 09:01:19 [UTC]
Event: Epidemic Hazard
Area: Africa
Country: Kenya
State/County: Rift Valley Province
Location: [Turkana District]
Number of Deads: 40 person(s)
Number of Injured: N/A
Number of Infected: 250 person(s)
Number of Missing: N/A
Number of Affected: N/A
Number of Evacuated: N/A
Damage level: N/A

Description:

The government has confirmed an outbreak of dysentery and cholera in parts of Turkana where 40 people have died in the last one month. Turkana Central medical officer Joseph Epem said they had dispatched a team of more than 50 medical officers and delivered drugs to help combat the outbreak in Kerio division. However, Epem said the outbreak had been compounded by famine in the area. More than 250 other victims have been placed under treatment. "We treating the affected people to ensure the diseases do not spread," Epem said. Last week, medical teams had been sent to parts of Turkana to investigate the cause the deaths. Turkana Central district commissioner Humphrey Nakitare said the teams have been working in Kerio area where most of the victims are reported to have succumbed to famine, malaria and diarrhoea, among other ailments.

He said than 100,000 people still rely on relief food for survival in the area where the famine situation worsened early this year, leading to the Kenyans for Kenya Initiative through which more than Sh600 million was raised to aid the famine victims. Kerio division Public Health officer Diana Rotich, said famine had contributed to the deaths in the area. She said more than 200 people in the area were in need of medical care, adding that the government would dispatch drugs and medical teams to help the residents. "Hundreds of children are suffering from malnutrition in the region," she said. "A high number of people are affected by the famine and are in critical condition but government teams and humanitarian agencies are taking measures to help the victims."

Nakitare directed chiefs in the region to report to the government incidents of famine to avert more deaths. "Action will be taken against chiefs who fail to report such incidents to the government because they are neglecting their duties," the DC warned. The Red Cross has also dispatched a team to the area and will send in supplies to feed the starving victims. Nakitare said they had supplied adequate food to famine victims "although the supplies may have run out". Turkana is an arid region where both drought and rains wreak havoc in equal measures. While the drought leads to famine, the region normally experiences floods during heavy rains.


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