04-20-2018  9:51 am      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

April 24 is Voter Registration Deadline for May 15 Primary Election

Tuesday, April 24, is voter registration and party choice deadline for May 15 Primary Election ...

Portland Libraries Celebrate National Poetry Month

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PCRI Launches the Pathway 1000 Implementation Plan

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AG Rosenblum Launches New Resource on Oregon’s New Gun Safety Laws

One-page handout aims to educate Oregonians about the new law ...

Ethos Music Center Honors Portland Attorney Dave Baca with Annual Resonance Award

Founder Charles Lewis to receive first-ever Ethos Visionary Award at the May 2 event ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Will HUD Secretary Ben Carson Enforce the Fair Housing Act?

Julianne Malveaux questions HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s ability to enforce the Fair Housing Act ...

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Reggie Shuford on the daily indignities African-Americans face in Philadelphia and around the country ...

Black People Must Vote or Reap the Consequences

Jeffrey Boney on the importance of voting in the Black community ...

Civil Rights Community Doesn’t Need to Look Farr for Racism in Trump Court Nominees

Derrick Johnson, NAACP President and CEO, explains organization's opposition to Trump's nomination of Thomas Farr ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

By David Simpson CNN







Tests of a Louisiana parish's water supply confirmed the presence of a rare brain-eating amoeba blamed for last month's death of a 4-year-old boy.

The state's Department of Health & Hospitals said Thursday that tests conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found Naegleria fowleri in St. Bernard Parish water.

The water is safe to drink, state officials said, although they cautioned against getting water in the nose.

Naegleria fowleri is found in hot springs and warm fresh water, most often in the Southeastern United States. The amoeba enters the body through the nose and travels to the brain. There is no danger of infection from drinking or cooking with contaminated water, the CDC said. Infected patients are diagnosed with primary amoebic meningoencephalitis.

The parish water supply came under suspicion because its chlorine levels were low. Chlorine kills the amoeba, said Assistant Health Secretary J.T. Lane.

Lane said the parish, along the Gulf Coast southeast of New Orleans, began flushing water lines with chlorine last week, a process that will continue for several weeks until chlorine levels reach recommended levels.

A Mississippi boy who had played on a water slide made out of a long sheet of plastic while visiting St. Bernard Parish contracted amoebic meningoencephalitis and died last month. Tests at the home where he was playing found the Naegleria fowleri amoeba.

Officials said less than 1% of patients survive the deadly brain infection caused by this amoeba. But an experimental drug from the CDC has shown promise in fighting it. Kali Hardig, a 12-year-old in Arkansas, survived after contracting the amoeba in July, possibly at a Little Rock, Arkansas, water park.

Doctors credited Kali's mom, Traci Hardig, with her survival, saying she brought her daughter to the hospital early and pushed for more tests.

"If you believe that there's something more wrong with your daughter or your son than a simple virus or stomach flu, stay in there, hang in there," Hardig told CNN. "Talk to the doctor ... and reassure them that this is not a normal illness."

The first symptoms of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis appear one to seven days after infection, including headache, fever, nausea, vomiting and a stiff neck, according to the CDC.

"Later symptoms include confusion, lack of attention to people and surroundings, loss of balance, seizures and hallucinations," the government agency's website says. "After the start of symptoms, the disease progresses rapidly and usually causes death within one to 12 days."

Here are some tips from the CDC to help lower the risk of infection:

• Avoid swimming in fresh water when the water temperature is high and the water level is low.

• Hold your nose shut or use nose clips while swimming.

• Avoid stirring up the sediment while wading in shallow, warm freshwater areas.

• If you are irrigating, flushing or rinsing your sinuses (for example, by using a neti pot), use water that has been distilled or sterilized.

 

CNN's Jacque Wilson and Joe Sutton contributed to this report.

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