SPRINGFIELD, Ohio — County health departments in Central Ohio have linked dairy calves brought to the region for youth 4-H projects to an outbreak of a parasitic illness in nearly two dozen people thus far.

The Clark and Champaign county health departments say they’re investigating 23 possible cases of cryptosporidiosis (krip-toh-spor-id-ee-OH’-sis) linked to the calves sold to children.

Cryptosporidiosis is an illness caused by parasites found in soil, food and water and in the dung of infected animals. The illness can cause intestinal problems, to include diarrhea, fever and abdominal pain.

A Clark County epidemiologist says hydrogen peroxide is the only known disinfectant for killing the cryptosporidiosis parasite.

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