Michigan death after infection linked to Wis. outbreak

Associated Press

Lansing — Health officials say they’ve confirmed that a western Michigan resident died after contracting a bloodstream infection that matches a Wisconsin outbreak.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services said Thursday it was notified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the match on March 11. Michigan officials say the person who died was an older adult with underlying health conditions.

Wisconsin health officials say 17 people with infections caused by Elizabethkingia bacteria have died since the outbreak began in November. Health officials say the Wisconsin outbreak is the largest recorded in published literature.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the organism is common in the environment, including water and soil, but it rarely causes infections.

CDC spokeswoman Melissa Brower says “it shouldn’t be assumed” the person from Michigan had been to Wisconsin because the states are in the same geographic region.