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Health director pushes pertussis vaccine

State has 2,300 cases

August 22, 2012
By Fritz Busch - Staff Writer , The Journal

NEW ULM - Brown County Public Health Director Karen Moritz told commissioners Tuesday that Minnesota has more than 2,300 confirmed pertussis (whooping cough) cases this year.

She promoted the Tdap vaccine for adults and children age seven and older, particularly those that spend time around infants.

"It's a very annoying, uncomfortable cough that can last up to eight weeks and makes some people vomit," Moritz said. "It starts out with a little fever and headache."

Moritz said there is one confirmed pertussis case in Brown County, and possibly another will be confirmed soon.

In another health matter, Minnesota is seeing a rise in West Nile Virus cases this year with mosquitoes that prefer dry conditions.

"Many people have West Nile Virus and really never know it," Moritz wrote in her Public Health Update. "Some people become quite ill. The illness can cause long-term neurological and motor difficulty."

It usually begins with fever and fatigue that can progress into confusion and loss of organ and motor functions.

"Use DEET to protect yourself from mosquito bites," the report stated.

Moritz urged the public to wash their hands often to avoid a swine flu virus, being studied by the Minnesota Department of Health. Most human cases were recently identified in Indiana and Ohio, the report said.

Commissioners approved:

A City of Hanska request to purchase Lot 6 Block 5 Original Plat Hanska for $562 (unpaid taxes) plus recording costs and an agreement to share demolition costs with the City of Hanska. The county share is estimated to not exceed $2,690, based on estimates obtained by the City of Hanska.

Rejecting all bids for the Cottonwood Township Section Corner Re-monumentation Project due to a large discrepancy between bids, which suggests county project expectations should be made more clear. Bids from Bolton & Menk, I&S Engineers, and Sibley Surveyors ranged from $16,107 to $36,540.

A $25,000 quote from Jim's Stucco of Revere to stucco the License Bureau building. The project will solve recurring corner block repair and repainting costs.

Traditional stucco would be mechanically attached to exterior concrete block walls, which would be preferred to EIFS (exterior insulation and finishing system) that range in cost from $24,375 to $36,000.

(Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at



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