Health officials recommend Wake public pools shut down

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Parents are concerned about a parasite at public pools that could be causing illness (WTVD)

After two dozen people in Wake County contracted the gastrointestinal disease cryptosporidiosis in public swimming pools, health officials are recommending all public pools in the county shut down temporarily and treat their water with high doses of chlorine to help stop the spread of the illness.

READ MORE: 'Pool parasite' popping up at Wake County public pools

But one Raleigh mother is wondering if quicker action at her local pool could have prevented at least some of the two dozen people who've been infected from getting sick.

Britni Prybol said her son was the first to be diagnosed with crypto, but she learned about the problem along with a handful of neighbors who'd all been swimming at North Hills Club a few days earlier.

"They were all up in the middle of the night with terrible watery diarrhea," Prybol recounted. "Just awful sick, screaming in pain."

Prybol said her 3-year-old son and five other neighboring children went through the same thing the night of June 23.

"He woke up screaming, went straight to the bathroom. He was in the bathroom for four or five hours. Just constant crying, screaming, asking us to make it go away. It was terrible," Prybol recalled.

Prybol called the pediatrician, then she called the health department. It was the first they had heard of any problems at the North Hills club. They went out that day and tested the water but didn't find anything. Then those test results came back.

"Two days later we found out my son had cryptosporidium," Prybol said.

A few days later, the club sent members an email saying they had gotten other complaints a few weeks earlier and had had the water tested. The email stated they found nothing. But they didn't report the complaints to the county health department, as state law requires.

Prybol wonders if they had reported the complaints, whether there would be as many people who have gotten sick.

"I don't understand why the manager didn't make a phone call. Or send an email out and say, 'Hey, we have some sick kids.' I can almost see waiting two or three days to see if it was just a stomach bug, but this was two weeks of dozens of children getting sick. It was terrible."

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