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Health Surveillance - State of Florida

UPDATE: This information is current as of August 13, 2010, 3:00 PM ET

Map of the state of FloridaFlorida is using the ESSENCE (Electronic Surveillance System for Early Notification of Community-Based Epidemics) system, which tracks the symptoms reported by emergency department patients around the state, as well as data from calls to Poison Centers, through the Florida Poison Information Center Network (FPICN). The system looks for specific symptoms that could potentially be related to breathing, swallowing, or touching the oil. These symptoms include headache, nausea, vomiting, and skin problems, as well as issues with the respiratory and cardiovascular systems.

Florida officials are using these systems in six coastal counties to look for trends in the symptoms that could be potentially related to the oil spill. If they observe an increasing trend in these symptoms, Florida’s state and local departments of health will look to see if there is a relationship between the oil exposure and the symptoms.

Findings (July 25 – July 31)

During this time period, ESSENCE found three emergency department patients who reported breathing fumes from the oil.

FPICN received 16 reports of oil exposure during this time period. Fifteen of the calls came from Florida Panhandle counties, one of these calls came from counties outside of the Panhandle.

Twelve of the 16 callers reported experiencing symptoms possibly related to their exposure, including skin irritation or pain, skin redness, rash, itching, bleeding, swelling, nausea, drowsiness, loss of energy, headache, throat irritation, shortness of breath, cough/choke, and chest pain.

Four of these callers reported that their exposures were from breathing fumes from the oil, four callers reported touching the oil, one caller reported swallowing the oil. Additionally, two callers reported breathing fumes from the oil and/or touching the oil, and one caller reported swallowing and/or touching the oil.

As of July 7, 2010, FPICN is receiving reports of oil spill-related exposures through direct calls to three regional poison centers and through reports from an external partner poison center. Florida has performed back-entry of the calls received at the external partner poison center prior to July 7; therefore FPICN currently contains all exposure calls placed from Florida related to the oil spill.

Previous Updates

Findings (July 18– July 24)
Findings (July 11– July 17)
Findings (July 4– July 10)
Findings (June 27– July 3)
Findings (June 20– June 26)
Findings (June 13 – June 19)
Findings (June 8 – June 12)
Findings (May 24 – June 7)
Findings (May 16 – May 22)



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