After camping in Yosemite National Park this past July, a child is reported to have experienced plague like symptoms and is currently being monitored by the California Department of Public Health. According to the California Department of Public Health’s press release, the child in question reportedly contracted the rare disease after camping in Yosemite’s Crane Flat Campground this past month. The Los Angeles county resident also spent time around Stanislaus National Forest during the mid-July trip.
Currently the child is recuperating.
“Plague is an infectious bacterial disease that is carried by squirrels, chipmunks and other wild rodents and their fleas. When an infected rodent becomes sick and dies, its fleas can carry the infection to other warm-blooded animals or humans.”- California Department of Public Health
The state health organization is in the process of tracking the family’s travels since the incubation period began. The disease cannot be transmitted from human to human.
“Human cases of plague are rare, with the last reported human infection in California occurring in 2006,”-Dr. Karen Smith.
Only 42 cases of the Plague have been reported in California since 1970
“Although this is a rare disease, people should protect themselves from infection by avoiding any contact with wild rodents. Never feed squirrels, chipmunks, or other rodents in picnic or campground areas, and never touch sick or dead rodents. Protect your pets from fleas and keep them away from wild animals.”- Dr. Karen Smith
Typically, patients experience the following symptoms: high fever, chills, nausea, weakness and swollen lymph nodes in the neck, armpit or groin.
All those experiencing these symptoms should report themselves to local health officials.