Rare Bacteria Appears To Have Killed SF Researcher

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS / AP) — Health officials are trying to determine how a rare strain of bacteria infected and apparently led to the death of a researcher at a Veteran’s Affairs infectious diseases lab in San Francisco.

The man, identified by the medical examiner’s office as 25-year-old Richard Din, died Saturday morning after working in a lab at the medical center, said Erika Monterroza, a spokeswoman for the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which is investigating the death.

The cause of death has yet to be determined, but Din had apparently been working with the bacterium meningococcus at the lab prior to his death, Monterroza said.

She said Din was employed by the Northern California Institute for Research and Education, a nonprofit dedicated to advancing veterans’ health research that is based at the VA Medical Center at 4150 Clement St.

The institute notified Cal/OSHA of the death on Sunday, prompting the agency to launch an investigation. The California and San Francisco public health departments were also notified, Monterroza said.

Cal/OSHA has six months to complete an investigation, and if workplace violations are uncovered, the employer could face citations and fines, Monterroza said.

The San Francisco Department of Public Health was trying to locate everyone who had close contact with the researcher during the time he was infected.

City health spokeswoman Eileen Shields said friends and people who worked with man, as well as about 60 health workers involved in his treatment, were being given antibiotics.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

  • http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2012/05/03/researchers-death-puts-spotlight-on-bacteria-strain/ SF Researcher’s Death Puts Spotlight On Bacteria Strain « CBS San Francisco

    […] FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The death of a young researcher at the San Francisco Veteran Affairs Medical Center is raising the possibility that he died from […]

  • http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2013/02/20/san-francisco-va-lab-faces-sanctions-for-researchers-death/ San Francisco VA Lab Faces Sanctions For Researcher’s Death « CBS San Francisco

    […] FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — The death of a laboratory worker at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center last April prompted federal safety officials on Wednesday to announce the issuance of a notice of unsafe and […]

blog comments powered by Disqus
Guide To The Holidays
Shine A Light On The Holiday Season With ‘Giving Tuesday’

Listen Live