PRESS RELEASE

City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
333 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

10/1/2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # CM: 100114
Subject:
Enterovirus D68 Confirmed in a Child in Long Beach
Health Department Encourages Public Take Steps to PreventRespiratory Illness
Contact:
Mitchell Kushner, MD, City Health Officer
562.570.4074







The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services confirms that an infant in Long Beach has been diagnosed with Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68). The child was briefly hospitalized and has recovered. 

From mid-August to October 1, 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed 500 people in 42 states and the District of Columbia with respiratory illness due to EV-D68.

Enterovirus D68 causes mild to severe respiratory illness. Children with asthma are at highest risk of developing severe complications. Symptoms may include fever, cough, runny nose, and body aches. Severe symptoms may include wheezing and difficulty breathing.

The virus is found in an infected person's respiratory secretions, such as saliva, nasal mucus, or sputum. EV-D68 can spread from person to person when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or touches contaminated surfaces.

"We always urge residents to wash their hands with soap and water to prevent disease transmission," said Dr. Mitchell Kushner, Long Beach City Health Officer. Additional recommendations include:

  • Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, especially after changing diapers.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • 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.

To reduce risk of severe respiratory illness, people with asthma should regularly take their medication and maintain control of their illness. People with asthma are also encouraged to get the influenza vaccine.