State: CDC lab results show still no confirmed cases of Enterovirus-D68 in Washington
SEATTLE — The state Department of Health said Tuesday there are still no confirmed cases of Enterovirus-D68 in Washington, after the first samples were tested by the CDC and found to be negative.
Earlier Tuesday, Seattle Children’s Hospital said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that the first two samples from ill children it sent the lab came back negative for Enterovirus D68.
Other samples are still being tested, it said.
“There are several children who have been hospitalized throughout the state with enterovirus or rhinovirus,” the Washington State Department of Health said. “We are still awaiting several test results from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Results so far have been negative for EV-D68 from the CDC. ”
Seattle Children’s said Tuesday they have now had 62 children since Sept. 1 with confirmed cases of some form of Enterovirus/Rhinovirus.
Enterovirus D68 is the contagious virus that has sickened thousands of children across the country.
Health officials warned that if EV-D68 does appear locally, a large number of children could develop respiratory infections in a short time period.
Typically, the virus does not require hospitalization and is generally mild, much like the common cold. People who do not have severe illness do not need to seek medical evaluation or testing for EV-D68.
Enteroviruses are very common viruses with over 100 types, officials said, but the EV-D68 type has previously been uncommon in the U.S.
In other states, the EV-D68 outbreaks are resulting in significant numbers of children requiring emergency department visits and hospitalizations, officials said.
The virus can be particularly detrimental to children with asthma.
“It’s important for families to make sure asthma symptoms are under control, and to see a health care provider if a person with asthma develops a respiratory illness that worsens asthma symptoms,” Duchin said.
There is no vaccine for enterovirus infections. To decrease the risk for enterovirus infections:
- Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds (alcohol hand gel is not as good as hand washing for enteroviruses)
- Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid contact with ill people
- Do not go to day care, school or work while ill
- Avoid kissing, hugging, and sharing cups or eating utensils with people who are sick
- Disinfect frequently touched surfaces, such as toys and doorknobs, especially if someone is sick
- Children and adults with asthma should be sure to have their asthma symptoms under control and see a health care provider if they develop a respiratory infection and their asthma worsens