August 19, 2022

Shigella Outbreak Associated with Eric Gorbman Catering in Seattle, Washington

A Shigella outbreak in Seattle, Washington is associated with Eric Gorbman Catering. At least 17 people are sick in this outbreak, which occurred at private Bar Mitzvah parties catered by that facility at Temple Beth Am and Temple Beth Shalom in Seattle. One person has been hospitalized. And one of the ill persons has a lab-confirmed Shigella infection.

Shigella Outbreak Eric Gorbman Catering

At least two catering employees have reported illnesses, but they ldid not report being ill while they were working those events. Public Health – Seattle & King County say that it is likely that they were exposed at the event rather than being the source of this outbreak.

More food items were brought potluck style by attendees. If you or someone in your family attended an event at either temple on Saturday, March 3, 2018 and has been experiencing the symptoms of shigellosis, see your doctor.

The symptoms of shigellosis include vomiting, fever, and diarrhea that may be bloody that lasts for more than three days. Most people are diagnosed after submitting a stool sample. Symptoms usually appear a day or two after exposure to the bacteria.

Public health officials are interviewing party attendees about the foods they ate and the symptoms they experienced. You can help by completing an online survey if you went to those events, even if you aren’t sick. ┬áHearing from both ill and non ill persons can help pinpoint which foods may have been the cause of this outbreak.

Comparing food histories from those who are sick and those who are not can narrow the range of focus. The county Environmental Health team is meeting with the caterer to collect information about the food prepared at the parties and about food safety practices in general. Officials are also meeting with the officials at the temples to tell them about deep cleaning procedures.

At this time, the exact food or drink item that caused the illnesses hasn’t been identified. Since this bacteria spreads easily, and several food items may have been contaminated, officials may never discover the cause.

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