July 24, 2024

People From Five Kansas Counties Hit With Listeria in Past Year

Residents from five Kansas counties have been hit with Listeria food poisoning since January 2014, including five Kansans believed to be sickened by contaminated Blue Bell ice cream served at Via Christi St. Francis Hospital in Wichita. The statistics from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment don’t reveal names or hometowns of those who became ill, nor would the agency say which of the six listeriosis patients from the five counties are considered victims of the Blue Bell/Via Christi outbreak.

Of the six Kansas listeriosis patients, two are from Sedgwick County, which is dominated by the Wichita area. One each is from Harvey (county seat is Newton, Kansas); Wyandotte (county seat is Kansas City); Shawnee (county seat is Topeka, Kansas) and Ford (county seat is Dodge City, Kansas.) The five illnesses that developed in people being treated for other concerns at Via Christi St. Francis were sprinkled over the course of last year and in January 2015. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the first person fell ill in January 2014, the second fell ill in March, two more hospital patients contracted listeriosis in October and the fifth case patient fell ill at Via Christi St. Francis in January 2015. Three of the patients died, according to the CDC.

Three state health agencies and at least two federal agencies are continuing to investigate the outbreak. Officials at Via Christi St. Francis Hospital in Wichita said they removed Blue Bell ice cream as soon as there was any indication that the listeriosis illnesses were linked and possibly associated with milkshakes the hospital made from single-serve Blue Bell “Scoops” ice cream. Texas-based Blue Bell recalled and withdrew its “Scoops” product, along with nine other single-serve frozen products made on the same production line in Brenham, Texas. The Blue Bell ice cream recall was announced after epidemiologists in South Carolina and Texas found Listeria contamination in Scoops and at least two other items made on the same production line:┬áChocolate Chip Country Cookie Sandwich and the Great Divide Bar.

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The five known outbreak vctims from Kansas fell ill over a period of 13 months


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