Infectious Disease

First coronavirus case confirmed in Wisconsin

[KMSP Fox 9, Feb. 5, 2020] The coronavirus is creeping closer to Minnesota. A case has now been confirmed in Wisconsin. Hospitals here are prepared for if or when the coronavirus appears here. Fox 9 News talked with Allina Health’s United Hospital emergency room director Erik Johnson about the preparations here.

Coronavirus update

[KARE 11, Jan. 29, 2020] Coronavirus cases in China have now reached more than 5,900. At least 132 deaths are reported in Wuhan, the so-called epicenter of the virus. According to Dr. Frank Rhame, an infectious disease specialist with Allina Health, the virus is reported in 15 other countries and ‘will continue to spread’. “Because […]

With 2 confirmed cases in the U.S., coronavirus raises fears

[Faribault Daily News, Jan. 24, 2020] Two suspected cases of the deadly illness coronavirus have been reported in Minnesota, sparking fears that a now-global epidemic which started in China could be close to hitting home. In the wake of rising concerns over the virus, the Minnesota Department of Health issued an alert earlier this week […]

Flu season deaths in Minnesota double in a week as illness kills 8 more people

[KMSP Fox 9, Jan. 9, 2020] In a week, Minnesota has seen the number of people who died from the flu this season double, as the Department of Health has reported eight more deaths. Health officials say the median age of death is 80 and none of the deaths have been children at this time. […]

Hospitals report more flu cases, even as school outbreaks ebb with the holiday

[Star Tribune, Jan. 2, 2020] Minnesota hospitals admitted 117 influenza patients last week, the highest weekly total for the season, according to a Minnesota Health Department flu update on Thursday. So far, 505 people have been hospitalized for the flu, which is about the midrange for recent influenza seasons. Most of the patients tested were […]

CDC warns about illness spread by some pet store puppies

[KARE 11, December 27, 2019] This Christmas some people had their hearts set on puppies and other pets. But if you gifted a dog there is a warning from the CDC. About 30 people across 13 states including Minnesota have been infected by the bacteria linked to petting puppies from pet stores.  Dr. Frank Rhame is […]

Preparing for flu season

[KSTP-TV, Oct. 19, 2019] Health officials are urging the public to be prepared for this year’s flu season. Allina Health Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Frank Rhame joined KSTP News to share some tips. Rhame says it’s time to get your flu vaccine right now, before the peak flu season hits. Dr. Rhame also discussed the […]

It may take 7 years to develop, but here’s why a universal flu shot is important

[Healthline, Oct. 7, 2019] The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) has announced it’s giving a coalition of 15 universities and research organizations up to $130 million over 7 years to develop a universal flu inoculation. The hope is the longer the research goes, the longer the initial vaccines would last. “I’ve been at this for a […]

CDC worried about potentially severe flu season

[KSTP-TV, Sept. 24, 2019] A little pain now might save you a lot of pain later. The CDC is pushing for flu shots earlier this year compared to others in hopes of driving up vaccination numbers. Dr. Frank Rhame with Allina Health says timing can be tricky since flu season can often last through April. […]

CDC warns pool goers of fecal parasite

[KARE 11, July 2, 2019] Health officials are asking Americans to take precautions over reports that cryptosporidium, a fecal parasite that can be transmitted via swimming pools, is on the rise. It causes cryptosporidiosis, which can leave healthy adults suffering from “profuse, watery diarrhea” for as long as three weeks. The effects can be worse […]