The number of Minnesotans infected with fungal meningitis is holding steady at three cases, but the number of people killed in a 10-state outbreak has hit 11.
That's according to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where scientists have linked the rare infection to injectible steroids produced in Massachusetts and provided to patients at clinics in Edina, Fridley, Maple Grove and Shakopee. The total number of people infected in the United States stands at 119.
A spokesperson for Medical Advanced Pain Specialists (MAPS), one of two Minnesota medical groups that provided the tainted steroid, said MAPS staff is trying to help government agencies. Anne Trujillo, MAPS director of clinical operations, told the StarTribune:
"We've contacted all the patients who have been exposed to the recalled lots. ... We're trying to be very factual with the patients and give them reassurance and guidance. ... We've really wanted the public to get consistent information. ... [We] are doing our best to calm their fears but also get them tested when necessary."
Spokesperson Buddy Ferguson told Patch Monday that the MDH hoped to reach all 831 Minnesotans at risk from receiving contaminated steroids early this week.
One of those who got the shots but so far not the infection is Kay Hlusak of Brooklyn Park, a patient of MAPS' Maple Grove clinic, who told WCCO-TV about the "fear in your head [about] what might happen next."
A 27-year-old Oakdale resident—who recently ended up in the hospital with meningitis symptoms—told the Star Tribune that she just learned she had received three contaminated injections this summer. She is now waiting for test results.
Here are the two providers in Minnesota provided the tainted steroids and the locations of their six clinics:
- Medical Advanced Pain Specialists (MAPS) in Edina, Fridley, Shakopee and Maple Grove
- Minnesota Surgery Center (MSC) in Edina and Maple Grove