Nine health officials hired to fight Elizabethkingia outbreak in Wisconsin

MADISON — Gov. Scott Walker has announced the creation of nine new positions at the state Department of Health Services to combat a rare bloodstream infection.

There have been 57 confirmed cases of the Elizabethkingia bloodstream infection in Wisconsin, more than any other state. Gov. Scott Walker on Friday announced the new positions to help with the response and investigation of the outbreak, and prepare for other health risks like the Zika virus.

Walker says, "We need to make sure we have the resources to address the risk, and do whatever we can to keep Wisconsinites safe."

Eighteen people who have been diagnosed with the Elizabethkingia infection have died in Wisconsin. State health officials say most are over 65 and have a serious underlying health condition.