Sadly, 11-year-old Beaufort, South Carolina girl, Hannah Collins, passed away last evening after a battle with primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) caused by the lethal parasite, Naegleria fowleri, according to a family statement published in a local news source.

brain eating amoeba
Naegleria fowleri

Family friend, Kate Olin writes that Hannah died at 10:20 pm Friday surrounded by family and friends. The family thanked “the doctors, nurses and staff at Beaufort Memorial Hospital and the Medical University of South Carolina who worked so hard to help her to overcome the infection. We also want to thank and Todd MacLaughlan and the people at Profounda in Florida for everything they did in the middle of the night, to get the medicine that Hannah needed up to Charleston.”

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) said they believed Hannah contracted the amoeba on July 24  while swimming near Martin’s Landing on the Edisto River in Charleston County.

The drug, miltefosine was requested last Monday and arrived in South Carolina from Orlando early Tuesday morning.

On Thursday, they reported via Facebook that testing revealed irreparable brain damage and that medical personnel did everything possible.

The Beaufort child is the third reported fatality from Naegleria fowleri this summer in the US.

We at Outbreak News Today send our thoughts and prayers to the family for strength during this incredibly difficult situation.