Friday, September 6, 2013

Infectious disease update


Giardiasis is a diarrheal disease caused by parasites, and it is the most common infectious diarrheal illness reported in Maine. So far in 2013, there have been 131 cases of Giardia reported in Maine, compared to 122 in all of 2012.

Giardiasis tends to occur more frequently in the summer and fall months. Individuals at greatest risk of infection with Giardia include people swallowing contaminated drinking water (such as backpackers or campers), travelers to endemic countries, and people with close contact with infected individuals (including childcare settings) and infected animals.

For more information, go to

Pertussis (whooping cough)

Pertussis (whooping cough) is a cyclical disease that continues to affect a significant number of Maine residents. Maine CDC issued an update on statewide pertussis on July 30, which can be found at

There have been 244 reported cases of pertussis so far this year in Maine. This is less than the 476 reported cases for the same period last year, but is more than the five-year median. Oxford county has the highest rate of pertussis in the state, and the majority of cases have occurred in people ages 7-19.

Maine CDC encourages providers continue to test and treat patients. DTaP vaccine is recommended for all infants and children. Tdap vaccine is recommended for all preteens, teens, and adults.

For more guidance and information, visit


Weekly updates on flu activity will resume in October. Maine CDC reminds everyone to take everyday preventive measures against the flu:
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow or shoulder
  • Stay home when you feel sick
  • Get vaccinated

US CDC has published a summary of the recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) for the 2013-2014 flu season at

The Vaccine Information Statements (VIS) for this coming season’s vaccines are available at

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