4 Fla. Meningitis Cases Linked To National Outbreak

TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — Four confirmed meningitis cases in Florida are linked to a national outbreak according to Gov. Rick Scott.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed more than 100 cases of the fungal meningitis nationwide. The outbreak spans nine states and has killed at least eight people. None of the deaths are in Florida.

Gov. Scott said Tuesday that all four Florida cases are related to the same facility in Marion County.

He said that as of Monday authorities had contacted nearly 700 of the 1,185 patients linked to facilities that got tainted medicine in Marion, Miami-Dade, Orange and Escambia counties.

The Miami-Dade facility has been identified by the Florida Department of Health as the Surgical Park Center in Miami.

Health officials suspect a tainted steroid medication made by specialty pharmacy, New England Compounding Center,  is to blame. They don’t know how many of the shots have been contaminated with meningitis-causing fungus tied to the outbreak. Investigators say as many as 13,000 people may have received the tainted shots and about 17,700 single-dose vials sent to 23 states have been recalled by the Massachusetts company that produced it.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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