WASHINGTON, DC – Energy and Commerce leaders who are closely following the deadly E. coli outbreak in Germany are seeking answers from the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to protect the public health. The outbreak, which has infected at least one American, has triggered global concern given the symptoms associated with the bacteria.
In the bipartisan letter to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg and CDC Director Thomas Frieden, the committee leaders write, “As of June 6, 2011, case counts confirmed by Germany’s Robert Koch Institute include 642 patients with hemolytic uremic syndrome – a type of kidney failure that is associated with E. coli or STEC infections – and 15 deaths. We are especially concerned by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that, in the United States, there are one confirmed and three suspected cases of STEC O104:H4 infections identified in persons who recently traveled to Hamburg, Germany, the likely site of exposure.”
The letter was signed by full Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI), Ranking Member Henry Waxman (D-CA), Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA), Health Ranking Member Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Cliff Stearns (R-FL), and Oversight Ranking Member Diana DeGette (D-CO).
View a copy of the letter HERE.