After having collected their rickettsial investigation data in the form of field acquired specimens (see PHIL 20581), these epidemiologists had gathered around a table located inside an unknown medical facility, and upon which they’d placed their specimens, which they’d begun to analyze and collate. This epidemiologic study had been conducted in an unknown location in China. These field workers were still dressed in their personal protective equipment (PPE), which covered their heads and bodies, in order to protect them from the possibility of tick bites, and an ensuing rickettsial disease.
“Rickettsial infections are caused by a variety of bacteria from the genera Rickettsia, Orientia, Ehrlichia, Neorickettsia, Neoehrlichia, and Anaplasma. Rickettsia spp. are classically divided into the typhus group, and spotted fever group (SFG). Orientia spp. make up the scrub typhus group. The rickettsial pathogens most likely to be encountered during travel outside the United States include R. africae (African tick-bite fever), R. conorii (Mediterranean spotted fever), R. rickettsii (known as both Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Brazilian spotted fever), O. tsutsugamushi (scrub typhus), and R. typhi (murine typhus).”
For more on rickettsial diseases, please follow the link below.