June 29, 2015

Tarheel Q Restaurant NC Salmonella Outbreak Toll Reaches 197

Salmonella Outbreak

According to the North Carolina Department of Heath and Human Services, the Salmonella outbreak among those who ate at the Tarheel Q restaurant has now sickened 197 people in 7 states as of noon Friday June 26, 2015. Those people are sick with a diarrheal illness. The restaurant is located on Highway 64 in Lexington, North Carolina. Laboratory testing has found that the BBQ sample and a sample from a patient who become sick at the beginning of the outbreak are both positive for Salmonella Typhimurium. Both samples have the same DNA, or PFGE fingerprint. More than 20 additional clinical specimens are pending results at the state laboratory. Of those 197 patients, 54% are male, 43% are between the ages of 20 and 49. Most of the patients who live in North Carolina are from Davidson … [Read more...]

Learning Vine E. coli Outbreak: 14 Sick, 1 Death

EcoliOutbreak

An E. coli outbreak at the Learning Vine daycare center has sickened 14 children, according to the latest update from the state South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. Two children were hospitalized and one of them has died from hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) a complication of E. coli infections that leads to kidney failure. Samples from 11 of the confirmed cases have undergone genetic "fingerprinting" tests that show the infections are all from the same strain of shiga toxin producing E. coli. Health officials have not identified the source of the outbreak, but they say there is no evidence that it is ongoing. Tests on 262 other samples were negative for E. coli and no illnesses have been reported with onset dates after June 1. The center has been cleared to … [Read more...]

Now 11 Sick with E. coli At The Learning Vine Daycare in SC

E. coli Outbreak

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control has updated their investigation into the Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) outbreak at The Learning Vine daycare in Greenwood county. Now 11 cases have been confirmed. The cases are of people who went to the daycare and their family members. As of today, June 13, 2014, 194 test results are negative for STEC. The three new lab-confirmed cases are people who had diarrhea, or were asymptomatic, but are now symptom-free. There is "no evidence of ongoing transmission related to this investigation, and there has been no new onset of illness in students or staff of the daycare since June 1, 2015," according to the report. The childcare center has been cleared to re-open. The Learning Vine has met conditions of the public … [Read more...]

Health and Safety Violations at The Learning Vine Daycare Center

EcoliOutbreak

Health and safety violations have been reported at The Learning Vine daycare center in Greenwood, South Carolina, which is at the center of an E. coli outbreak. The report, issued by the South Carolina Child Care Early Care and Education department, lists 12 violations ranging from cross-contamination at diaper changing stations to open trash cans and a dirty fridge. E. coli infections are spread by contact with infected human waste and animal waste. In this outbreak, at least eight people are sick with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli bacteria; some have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and one 2-year-old boy has died. The daycare has received a "C" grade, which means the facility meets requirements, but that is the lowest grade on the scale. The violations that may be … [Read more...]

South Carolina Updates E. coli Outbreak at Learning Vine Daycare

E. coli Outbreak

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control has updated their investigation into the E. coli outbreak associated with The Learning Vine daycare in Greenwood County. As of June 8, 2015, there are eight confirmed cases of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli.  The announcement states, "at this time, no other facility is included as part of this ongoing investigation." Last week, officials announced that two-year-old Myles Mayfield died of complications from an E. coli infection. While no announcement has linked the toddler's death to the daycare center, this is the only known E. coli outbreak in that state at this time. Daycare facilities in Greenwood, Laurens, and Abbeville Counties are being kept informed about the investigation and the outbreak. Noted attorney Fred … [Read more...]

E. coli Outbreak at The Learning Vine Daycare in South Carolina

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control confirmed seven cases of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli associated with The Learning Vine daycare facility in Greenwood, South Carolina. That facility is located at 101 Overland Drive in Greenwood. The facility has closed voluntarily and staff has been cooperating with public health officials. A 2-year-old boy, Myles Mayfield, died May 31, 2015 from hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which is a complication of an E. coli infection. The statement from DHEC does not mention Myles, but lab cultures have confirmed that four of the E. coli cases associated with that facility are from the same strain of bacteria. Two people are currently hospitalized. State Epidemiologist Dr. Linda Bell said in a statement, "our primary concern … [Read more...]

CDC Looks for Outbreak Strain in Raw Ground Tuna, Finds Other Salmonella

tuna-sushi-samonella

Health officials in Arizona, where at least 10 people are part of a multistate raw ground tuna outbreak, tested some suspect product for Salmonella and found, not the outbreak strain, but two other strains of the bacteria, according to the latest update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  A search of the PulseNet database did not reveal any reported illnesses associated with the strains and a recall has been issued for the ground tuna product imported from Indonesia by Osamu Corp. As of June 4, no new illnesses have been reported in the outbreak which includes 53 people in nine states infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Paratyphi B variant L(+) tartrate(+) also called Salmonella Java. Ten people have been hospitalized. Health officials have not … [Read more...]

Whatcom County E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Final Summary

The Whatcom County Health Department in Bellingham, Washington has issued their final report into the E. coli O157:H7 outbreak that sickened at least 25 children. The outbreak appears to be over. All of the ill people either attended the Milk Makers Fest between April 21 and 23, 2015 at the Northwest Fairgrounds in Lynden, Washington; helped with the event between April 20 and April 24, or were in close contact with people associated with the event. Environmental contamination with E. coli O157:H7 at the Dairy Barn at the fairgrounds was the likely source of this outbreak. Case counts were calculated based only on lab-confirmed infections with E. coli O157:H7 or physician-diagnosed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which is a complication of an E. coli infection. Twenty-five peoeple … [Read more...]

What do Peter Pan and Blue Bell Have in Common?

One is peanut butter, one is ice cream. One was contaminated with Salmonella, the other with Listeria. Still, there are similarities between the Peter Pan peanut butter and Blue Bell ice cream food poisoning outbreaks. Peter Pan was in the news this week because the company that makes it, ConAgra Grocery Products LLC, a subsidiary of ConAgra Foods Inc.,  pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice (DOJ) in connection with a 2006-2007 Salmonella outbreak that sickened 700 people. ConAgra admitted that it had shipped contaminated food across state lines and agreed to pay a criminal fine of $8 million and to $3.2  million in asset forfeiture. “No company can let down its guard when it comes to these kinds of microbiological contaminants.  … [Read more...]

Memorial Day and Summer Holiday Food Safety Tips from the FDA

American Flag FPB

The FDA has released tips on eating safely this Memorial Day. Safe food handling when eating outdoors is important and can be tricky. When you are transporting food for a picnic or potluck, make sure to keep cold food cold and hot food hot. Cold food should be stored at temperatures below 40°F to prevent bacterial growth. You can pack meat, poultry, and seafood while still frozen so they stay colder longer. Organize cooler components. A plain picnic basket usually isn't insulated enough to hold perishable foods. Use two coolers, with beverages in one and perishable foods in another. As people take out drinks, they won't expose food to warm outdoor temperatures. Keep coolers closed too. Keep raw meat, poultry, and seafood wrapped and separate from foods that will be eaten raw. … [Read more...]

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