|A relatively benign bug becomes a highly lethal
pathogen, known to U.S. soldiers as Iraqibacter.
Health Officials Warn Hospitals of Afghan Bug
Threat posed by highly resistant bacteria underlines lack of
Federal authorities are warning hospitals across the country to beware
of a highly drug resistant bacteria that wounded troops are bringing
back from Afghanistan -- and that could inadvertently be spread to
The Battle over multiple drug resistant microbes:
MRSA, Acinetobacter baumannii, C. Difficile, VRE, etc.
Early this year (2006) an outbreak of MDR Acinetobacter baumannii
swept over Arizona, 236 cases in just two months. It was reported by the
state disease monitoring systems, but ignored on the national level.
Now dubbed "Supergerms", they spread without warning and seemingly
without official notices since they are infections instead of diseases. The
government is taking advantage of this technicality.
An ICU nurse at Bethesda Naval in Washington DC leaves work feeling
under the weather. Within 24 hours she is in a community hospital,
intubated, with Acinetobacter baumannii. It was determined that the
bacteria were acquired from a patient at work. She succumbed to the
infection quickly and with no fan fare. The story went silent.
At Brook Army Medical Center in Texas a soldier fights for his life, as his
combat wounds are made worse by infections the doctors can't seem to
handle. The only reason his story is known is that his civilian girl friend
speaks up for him.
This outbreak that is spreading nation wide is largely due to the war in
Iraq, and because of a legal technicality in reporting, the military and
CDC will not discuss it publicly.
More people come forward, bit by bit, telling stories of how the hospital
played down their infection. The one person who could have done
something about it, "Rep. Dennis Moore" has walked away from the
issue deciding it wasn't worth getting into even after what he had seen
on a visit to Walter Reed.
This silent killer is continuing to spread, and to an indifferent country
until it's YOUR turn. These bacteria will grow out of control in the near
future as it spreads through neglect.
Every VAMC in this country that had a soldier from Iraq in it is
contaminated with MDR AB, as simple as a doorknob or privacy curtain
to pass it on. Doctors often work at VA hospitals and community
As long as it doesn't have to be reported it will not be.
You're on your own America, until you say enough is enough.
Focus On Acinetobacter Surveillance
Comments posted March 4th 2006
By September 2004 the Department of Defense had collected 934
positive Acinetobacter baumannii cultures from 432 persons. This
reported from the Navy Environmental Health Center in Bethesda.
On September 21st, 2004 the Armed Forces Epidemiology Board met.
They talked about Acinetobacter baumannii with 350 colonized soldiers
as well as 200 infections.
Yet, the CDC / DOD only announced 102 infection cases in the
November 19th, 2004 MWMR report:
85 of the cases were OIF/OEF
Landstuhl Regional Medical Center 33
Walter Reed Army Medical Center 45
U.S. Navy hospital ship Comfort 11
National Naval Medical Center 8
Brooke Army Medical Center 5
By August 2005 Forbes reported that at least 280 cases of infection had
been reported. The DOD stodgily stood by public statements of 112
The argument from CHPPM / MEDCOM is that colonized soldiers are a
different story from infected soldiers. A colonized soldier however is still
a carrier. CHPPM is also trying to say since this is just an infection they
don't have to report it like infectious disease. They are not cooperating
to provide any updated statistics on it because of a directive at
MEDCOM stating they do not want to expose military vulnerabilities
So its going to take a Congressional Inquiry to CHPPM in order to get a
true idea of just how many cases of Acinetobacter baumannii there are
in the military. That and how many are carriers. Spreading this infection
from one hospital to another in America.
Here is one example:
A soldier dies in VA care at the James A. Haley Medical Center in Tampa
Florida, in December 2004. He had extensive surgery in Iraq and was
medivac'd to Landstuhl, Germany, Bethesda MD, and finally JHMC. This
was head, chest, and abdomen trauma. After his death it was
determined that he had tested positive twice for the Acinetobacter, which
would have changed the clinical outcome if
they had treated for it. (Page 22 of IG report)
What about the 7 cases at Tripler Army Medical Center in Hawaii? Why
were Chief Warrant Officer 3 Claude Boushey Sr.'s case and others not
discussed? That was July 2004.
In other cases, family members cannot get the medical records of their
deceased soldiers. Many have died from non-combat injuries that the
Pentagon is unwilling to disclose information about even to the parents.
These stall tactics keep anyone but the military from knowing how many
died of complications that the Acinetobacter baumannii contributed too.
More than likely OIF troops walking into any Veteran Affairs Medical
Center are possible colonized cases that contaminate that facility.
This is a national threat to public health safety that the Department of
Defense has taken a very lax position on. What the public doesn't know
wont hurt them, which is certainly not true with a drug resistant bacteria
that can be passed with as little as a handshake.
Superbug hits Canadian soldiers injured in suicide bombing
Thu, 23 Feb 2006
Master Cpl. Paul Franklin of Halifax lost a leg, Cpl. Jeffrey Bailey from
Edmonton had devastating head injuries, and Pte. William Salikin of
Grand Forks, B.C., also suffered a head injury.
The three soldiers were first taken to a U.S. military hospital in
Landstuhl, Germany. When they left a week later, all three men were
infected with drug-resistant bacteria.
Medical specialists aren't certain whether most infections started in the
battlefield or the hospital.
"It's thought that they may have gotten it from going through the hospital
in Landstuhl," said Lt.-Col. Henry Flaman, a Canadian military doctor in
Acinetobacter baumannii has become one of the most common sources
of infections among American troops wounded in Iraq.
The bacteria are found in soil and water in Iraq. When the microbes
enter traumatic wounds in the battlefield, the superbug can cause
The Iraq Infection
Forbes Magazine - August 2nd 2005
NEW YORK - Military doctors are fighting to contain an outbreak of a
potentially deadly drug-resistant bacteria that apparently originated in
the Iraqi soil. So far at least 280 people, mostly soldiers returning from
the battlefield, have been infected, a number of whom contracted the
illness while in U.S. military hospitals.
Most of the victims are relatively young troops who were injured by the
land mines, mortars and suicide bombs that have permeated the Iraq
conflict. No active-duty soldiers have died from the infections, but five
extremely sick patients who were in the same hospitals as the injured
soldiers have died after being infected with the bacteria, Acinetobacter
Acinetobacter baumannii Infections
Military Medical Facilities
Treating Injured U.S. Service Members, 2002--2004
From January 1, 2002 to August 31, 2004, military health officials
identified 102 patients with blood cultures of Acinetobacter baumannii at
military medical facilities treating service members injured in Afghanistan
Most of the infections were reported from
Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Germany
33 patients: 32 OIF/OEF casualties, one non-OIF/OEF, and Walter Reed
Army Medical Center (WRAMC), District of Columbia
45 patients: 29 OIF/OEF casualties, 16 non-OIF/OEF.
The Acinetobacter Baumanii strain was isolated to the soil in Iraq, and
enters through dirty battle field wounds or serious infections (
Pneumonia ). The British Health Protection Agency was the first to
publicly identify this in March 2003, and DOD waited till November 2004
to recognize it after the CDC posted the findings of the 102 cases.
Cases of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis at Walter Reed Army Hospital also
showed up with Acinetobacter baumannii.
One person from there wants to meet others who were there to share
Marcie Hascall Clark
321 779 6799
|Jan 11, 11:30 PM
Iraq still hostile for civilians
BY R. NORMAN MOODY
SATELLITE BEACH -- The scars on Merlin Clark's right arm
and the brace and heavy sock he must wear on his left leg
are evidence of his serious injuries.
Merlin Clark stands by the door to the patio at his home in
South Patrick Shores. His leg was injured in Iraq while he
was working there as a civilian. Image by Emily Barnes,
It's a constant reminder of the explosion that shattered his
leg and left three other civilians injured as they worked
disarming landmines and disposing of explosives in Iraq.
"We were really, really lucky it didn't hit somebody in a vital
part," he said.
Clark is an example of a growing group of civilians working
for private companies who do reconstruction work in
post-war countries. Some are medics, some builders.
Clark's job for Ronco Consulting Corp. was to dispose of
any unexploded bombs in a field north of Baghdad, so other
workers could restore electrical power.
The company specializes in clearing mine fields and has
worked around the globe. Clark had 22 years of experience
working in bomb disposal, including nine years in a Navy
ordnance unit. And while he knows his craft, conditions in
Iraq were different. This was very much still a war. He was
now a civilian.
Clark had worked in the former Yugoslavia, Albania, three
African nations, Peru, Ecuador and Nicaragua. But those
places were different. Bullets had stopped flying when he
landed to begin his work.
He entered Iraq on May 2, 2003, a day after President Bush
declared the end of major hostilities.
But the teams had to move quickly to avoid being targets of
insurgents as they cleared mines south of Baghdad, farm
fields elsewhere and the power line area north of the city.
The explosion that changed his life happened only a few
feet from him. Clark was taken to a field surgical hospital,
then on to Germany. He was transferred to Walter Reed
Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., where he spent
three weeks before being sent for treatment to Orlando
Regional Medical Center.
It took 13 1/2 hours of surgery at Walter Reed to save his
"They took good care of me," he said. "They were great
Clark cannot return to the work he likes, but after nearly a
year, he's back working from his home. He writes proposals
for the same company and helps to gather resources for
Because of a lot of out-of-pocket expenses, the Clarks have
dried up their savings, his wife, Marcie Clark, said.
"We're having to start over financially," she said.
His injuries mean no more bomb disarming, which requires
"My hand is still messed up and my hearing is shot," Clark
said as he held out his right hand. "I don't think I can trust
my right hand."
Contact Moody at 242-3651 or nmoody@...
|The Invisible Enemy in Iraq
by Steve Silberman
Wired News - January 22nd, 2007
Read this excellent investigative article on how the
Acinetobacter baumannii "from Iraq" is not even from
Iraq, and is not from the soil.
The Iraq Infection
by Mathew Herper
New York - Military doctors are fighting to contain an outbreak
of a potentially deadly drug-resistant bacteria that apparently
originated in the Iraqi soil.
Note: The military knew at this time that the Acinetobacter
baumannii thriving in their evacuation system was NOT from the
soil in Iraq but were still publicly promoting that lie.
Mathew Herper does not respond in regards to this.
Focus on Acinetobacter Surveilance 2005
Drug Resistant Superbug Traced to War in Iraq By
William Cole Wednesday July14, 2004
None of the cases involved fighting in Afghanistan. The
numbers are noteworthy, said the International Society
for Infectious Diseases, since the infection was not
noted in the 1991 Gulf War.
AFEB Meeting September 2004
Acinetobacter baumannii Infections Among Patients at
Military Medical Facilities Treating Injured U.S. Service
Multidrug-Resistant Acinetobacter Extremity Infections in
Gulf War and Health 2004
Tricare Conference 2005
A Baumannii report
Presentation of LCDR Kyle Peterson on A. Baumannii
Iraq Sampling Maps
The Walter Reed Army Hospital inspection of Rep. Dennis
Moore the behind scenes story of the effort to hide the
outbreak by Department of Defense
IOM Gulf War
Infectious Disease Report
MRSA Story from Iraq
Hospitals with cases of
What I faced After Iraq
by Kimberly Dozier
Insurgents in the
by Chas Henry
baumannii from Iraq
Military Health System
Marcie Hascall Clark
321 779 6799