May 30, 2020

Alabama Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Catered Meal

A catered meal at a private event in Colbert County, Alabama is likely linked to a Salmonella outbreak that sickened at least 99 people and hospitalized 22, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health. About 150 people attended the event on November 12, 2016. Eighteen of the hospitalized persons have been discharged and are at home, and the remaining hospitalized patients are recovering.

Luxury Restaurant Table setting.

Preliminary results indicate that the state health department laboratory has identified Salmonella enteriditis in food specimens of cooked chicken and green beans. The investigation is still ongoing and officials are looking at different foods as suspect.

Dr. Karen Landers, Assistant State Health Officer states that chicken was likely the primary source, as raw chicken is often contaminated with Salmonella bacteria. Chicken has to be cooked t0 an internal temperature of 165°F to kill pathogenic bacteria. The Salmonella in the green beans was likely from cross-contamination, such as using the same serving utensil for both products.

Dr. Scott Harris, Assistant State Health Office for Public Health Area 2, where the catering business is located, issued an emergency order to suspect the caterer’s permit last week pending further investigation. The Health Department finally named the cater: Indelible Catering of Moulton. That facility is no longer preparing food for the public.

If you attended a private event catered by Indelible Catering of Moulton, Alabama the weekend of November 12, 2016 and have experienced the symptoms of a Salmonella infection, please see your doctor. Even if you recover completely from your illness, the long term complications of this infection can be serious, including reactive arthritis and high blood pressure.

Those symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea that may be bloody, fever, chills, headache, and muscle pains. Symptoms usually begin six to seventy-two hours after exposure to the bacteria. Most people recover on their own, but some, about 20% in most outbreaks, become so ill they must be hospitalized. Most hospitalizations are for dehydration, but some people can be hospitalized for sepsis, a blood infection.

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