2 tables omitted
In October 2001, two letters contaminated with Bacillus
anthracis spores were processed by mechanical and manual methods at
the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) Brentwood Mail Processing and Distribution
Center in the District of Columbia. Four postal workers at the Brentwood facility
became ill with what was diagnosed eventually as inhalational anthrax; two
died. The facility was closed on October 21, and postexposure prophylaxis
was recommended for approximately 2,500 workers and business visitors.1 Subsequent reports of deaths of facility workers
prompted concern about whether mortality was unusually high among workers,
perhaps related to the anthrax attacks. To evaluate the rates and causes of
death among workers at the Brentwood facility during October 12, 2001–October
11, 2002, CDC, in collaboration with state and local health departments, analyzed
death certificate data. In addition, these data were compared with aggregate
mortality data from the five USPS facilities contaminated with B. anthracis during the fall 2001 anthrax attacks. This report summarizes
the results of that analysis, which indicate that rates and causes of death
among Brentwood workers during the 12 months after the anthrax attacks of
2001 were not different from rates and causes of deaths that occurred during
the preceding 5 years.
Follow-Up of Deaths Among U.S. Postal Service Workers Potentially Exposed to. JAMA. 2003;290(16):2119–2120. doi:10.1001/jama.290.16.2119
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