Salmonella Hospitalizes Two Lee's Summit Kindergartners

Source of Article:,0,4649863.story

Web Producer Rebecca Sapakie

June 2, 2009

LEE'S SUMMIT, MO. - Two Lee's Summit kindergarten students have been hospitalized with salmonella.

Richardson Elementary School sent a letter home to parents telling them about the situation.

The kids, a boy and a girl, have been enrolled in Richardson Kids Country during the school year. The Health Department has not determined if their illness is related to the school.

The boy is listed in fair condition. And, the girl's condition is not being released.

Salmonella may be spread through contaminated food and less frequently from person-to-person or on toys and other objects. The school has instructed its district custodians to do additional cleaning and disinfecting at Richardson Elementary as a precaution.

"I am concerned," said parent Tiffani Minich. "Because I don't have any other child care set up for the summer if there really is a serious issue."

Meanwhile, the Lee's Summit School District says the Health Department still has not determined if the salmonella can be traced back to the school. It's more likely the bacterial infection would be spread by contaminated food, but it could also be spread person to person, or by touching contaminated items.

"I'm a new mom, I don't know much about it, so it's kind of alarming to me," said parent Amy Makovec. "I don't know what to even watch out for."

Salmonella is a bacterial infection that is usually transmitted to humans by eating foods contaminated by animal feces. Salmonella may also be found in the feces of some pets, especially those with diarrhea. Reptiles as well as many chicks and young birds may harbor Salmonella in their feces. Children and adults should be especially diligent about hand washing after handling any reptile or bird, even healthy animals. Most persons infected with salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramps and occasionally headache and nausea eight to 72 hours after infection, and the illness usually lasts four to seven days. The majority of people recover without treatment, however, some may need to be hospitalized. Many different kinds of illnesses can cause diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps, and the only way to determine salmonella is through laboratory tests.

"I'll go home and do some research, and talk to my husband and just see what his thoughts are as well," said Minich. "But I think Lee's Summit will take care of it, and they'll handle it."

If you think your child may have had symptoms within the last two weeks, you're asked to call Richardson Elementary



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