Third Child Illness With No Connection to Enfamil

Sadly, a third infant has been hospitalized after testing positive for the Cronobacter bacteria that killed a newborn in Missouri last week. Reports of that infant’s death prompted Wal-Mart to remove Enfamil from their store shelves, despite Mead Johnson’s assurances that their Enfamil products were safe.

The most recent illness, a baby from Oklahoma, was given a different brand of formula than used in two previously reported cases of the infection. Mead Johnson Nutrition Co., the world’s leading seller of children’s formula, said that its tests showed no bacteria in a batch of formula used by the Missouri baby who died. Wal-Mart Stores has said that it will wait for the government results before deciding whether to return Mead Johnson’s formula to its shelves. In addition to Wal-Mart, Kroger Co. and Walgreen Co. pulled a batch of Mead Johnson’s formula after the Missouri baby’s death was disclosed.

The second case involved an Illinois baby who fell sick in Missouri during a trip, officials have said. Public health officials are checking to see if the bacteria in the infections have the same genetic fingerprint. If they do, that may suggest they came from the same source. Investigations are continuing.