Those emails show that the unusual cluster of fungal infections drew the attention of federal health officials, including top officials at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
"Our only goal was to alert doctors who were treating people with the infections to keep people from dying from them," said Kevin Gipson, the county's director of health. "That's the role of public health."
Kendra Williams, the county administrator for community health and epidemiology, said the county asked the state on June 3 to send out a message warning health care providers to watch for fungal infections, with an attached memo from St John's Hospital.
The state did not issue the warning.