April 11, 2021

Sandy Plains Baptist Church Salmonella Outbreak Sickens 95

The Salmonella outbreak at the Sandy Plains Baptist Church barbecue has now sickened 95 people, according to news reports. Most of those sickened, 47,  are in Rutherford county. Forty-four ill persons live in Cleveland County, and four others live in other counties.

Salmonella photoThe fundraising barbecue was held on September 7, 2013. Reports of illness started reaching public health officials about a week later. As many as 5,000 people attended the event.

The symptoms of salmonellosis, the illness caused by the Salmonella bacteria, include diarrhea that may be bloody, fever, abdominal cramps, vomiting, fever, chills, headache, and muscle pains. Symptoms usually begin six to seventy-two hours after infection, and last up to a week. Some people become so ill they need to be hospitalized. And some have long-term complications of the infection, including Reiter’s syndrome, which can lead to arthritis.

Public health officials are interviewing patients about their illness, trying to determine a common link. Salmonella outbreaks are usually linked to improperly prepared or undercooked chicken, eggs, and raw milk. Contaminated produce has also caused outbreaks. If you attended this event and have been ill, see your doctor and contact the Cleveland County Health Department at 704-484-5100 or the Rutherford County Health Department at 828-287-6100.

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