CDC says one new death from meningitis; number of cases at 197

Sun Oct 14, 2012 12:02am IST

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(Reuters) - Another person has died from fungal meningitis linked to possibly tainted vials of a steroid medication, bringing the death toll in an unprecedented outbreak to 15, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Saturday.

The new victim was in Indiana, which now has reported two deaths from the rare form of meningitis.

The number of people stricken with meningitis in the outbreak reached 197 on Saturday, up 13 from Friday. In addition, there is one case of an infection after an injection in an ankle that has not been confirmed as meningitis, the CDC said.

Illinois reported its first case of meningitis since the wave of infections began.

The outbreak has turned into a major health scandal after a company based in Massachusetts shipped vials that may have been tainted to 23 states and 76 medical facilities.

The scare has prompted multiple investigations and the company, New England Compounding Center, has recalled the product and suspended operations.

(Reporting By Greg McCune; Editing by Eric Beech)

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