- Associated Press - Thursday, March 5, 2015

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The Missouri health department is investigating whether a staph bacteria caused the deaths of two St. Charles County residents.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (https://bit.ly/1DYMujD ) reports that officials confirmed Wednesday that they are looking into whether methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA (MUR’-suh), is linked to the February deaths of a 48-year-old woman and her 19-year-old son.

The St. Charles County Department of Community Health and the Environment said in a statement Friday that the deaths appear to be isolated and that there is no risk to the public. The department is working with two St. Charles hospitals on the investigation.

“We extend condolences to the family and appreciate their cooperation as we seek answers to what may have caused these tragic deaths,” department director Hope Woodson said in the statement. “Hospital laboratory technicians and the Missouri State Laboratory are diligently working to determine a cause of death, which will enable medical providers to further treat those who may be affected. In the interim, if members of the community have medical concerns, we ask that they consult their personal medical provide.”

In a 2013 report from the Centers for Disease Control said that about 80,000 people were infected with the bacteria each year, and about 11,000 people die.

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Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, https://www.stltoday.com

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