Testing by federal health officials confirms six cases of a respiratory virus in children in North Carolina.
The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services on Monday confirmed the presence of enterovirus D68, or EV-D68 in the state. A department statement says the specimens that tested positive came from children ages 10 and under with respiratory illnesses.
Tests were conducted at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on specimens submitted from hospitals statewide.
DHHS isn’t saying where the children live or where they are being treated in order to protect patient confidentiality. It does add there are more than 100 types of enteroviruses and 10 to 15 million infections across the U.S. each year.
According to DHHS officials, the CDC has reported enterovirus in 27 states.
The virus can cause mild to severe illness, with the worst cases needing life support for breathing difficulties. No deaths have been reported.
The CDC reports you can help protect yourself and others from non-polio enterovirus infections by:
•Washing your hands often with soap and water, especially after using the toilet and changing diapers,
•Avoiding close contact, such as touching and shaking hands, with people who are sick, and
•Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces.