Disease forecaster Ascel Bio today is re-issuing an alert for Cryptosporidiosis disease across the United States.
Warnings for Georgia, Maryland, New York, Ohio, and Washington are issued as these states are seeing incidence rates above forecast, according to the most recent data from late September 2016.
Maryland, New York and Washington remain on our watch list since last week’s forecast. Ascel Bio’s current projections for Maryland, New York, Ohio and Washington all show a largely decreasing trend that will continue as we approach winter with minute fluctuating increases noted in late fall. Georgia’s forecast also illustrates a decreasing trend with another peak starting in late December. This peak will continue into January 2017. For all mentioned states, recent reported case counts show a renewed surge in cryptosporidiosis, surpassing all forecast highs. While Maryland, New York and Washington levels continue to increase since last week’s already high case counts, Georgia levels have steadily increased from case counts in early September that were below our forecast low. In Ohio, cases declined in mid-September with levels nearing our forecast low. However, a sudden upsurge in late September has pushed the case counts out of range and exceed our forecast high.
Nationally, Ascel Bio is projecting a significant increase in Cryptosporidiosis cases and demand for care in the coming months. Cryptosporidium is a protozoan parasite that infects reptiles, fish, birds and mammals, such as farm livestock. Petting farm outbreaks display a seasonal trend as these outbreaks appear during springtime and summer. It replicates in a host after ingestion of contaminated food or water. Once expelled with fecal matter, the parasite can survive in different types of environmental conditions due to its robust shell. Symptoms start 2-10 days after infection and include: watery diarrhea, stomach cramps, dehydration, nausea and vomiting. Healthy individuals can recover on their own but immunocompromised individuals are more prone to developing chronic illnesses and complications. Factors that contribute to cryptosporidiosis outbreaks involve direct contact with newborn livestock, animal feces and inadequate hygiene. Preventative measures include maintaining proper hygiene after handling animals, soil and contact with fecal matter. Drinking untreated water is not recommended.