May 31, 2020

Hepatitis A Exposure at Zaxby’s in Savannah, Georgia

A food handler at Zaxby's restaurant at 5971 Ogeechee Road in Savannah, Georgia has been diagnosed with hepatitis A, according to the Coastal Health District of Georgia. Anyone who ate food or drank beverages at that facility from March 29, 2019 through April 3, 2019 is at risk for developing the illness. While it is rare for restaurant patrons to get sick when a food handler is sick, it does happen. This virus is very contagious. This exposure period is within the two week period when a hepatitis A or immune globulin vaccination is effective. Anyone who ate there on March 29, 2019 has to get a vaccine today or they will not be protected. Most pharmacies offer these vaccinations, or contact your health care provider to get one. The symptoms of hepatitis A include loss of … [Read more...]

Georgia Hard Hit by Mystery E. coli O103 Outbreak

Georgia has been hard hit by the mystery E. coli O103 outbreak that has sickened at least 96 people in 5 states. Public health officials still do not know what is causing these illnesses. At least 17 people are sick in Georgia, with three in the hospital because their illnesses are so serious. Others are ill in Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia. This outbreak was first announced by the Kentucky Department of Health on March 29, 2019, with 20 sick. It has grown very quickly, more than quadrupling in size in 11 days. Officials have not yet said if any food or restaurant or grocery stores is connected to this outbreak. Some news reports stated that fast food may be associated with the illnesses, or some type of food delivery system. Other rumors that have floated around … [Read more...]

E. coli O103 Outbreak Sickens 96 in 5 States; No Source Found

An E. coli O103 outbreak sickens 96 in 5 states, according to the CDC. The outbreak was first announced less than two weeks ago and the number of patients has more than quadrupled in 10 days. Eleven people have been hospitalized. No one has developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure that is a complication of this illness The investigation is still ongoing. No food, restaurant, grocery store, or other source has been identified. Previous reports had mentioned fast food restaurants as a possible source, in addition to foods such as ground beef. But the CDC is not recommending that consumers avoid any food or outlet. The case count by state is: Georgia (17), Kentucky (46), Ohio (5), Tennessee (26), and Virginia (2). The patient age range is from 1 to 81 … [Read more...]

Potential Hepatitis A at McDonald’s in Chickamauga, GA

A food handler at the McDonald's at 106 LaFayette Road in Chickamauga, Georgia has been diagnosed with hepatitis A. This person worked there from March 4 through March 17, 2019 while he or she was infectious. "There might be some risk to the public," said District Health Director Dr. Unini Odama, although it is relatively rare for restaurant patrons to contract this illness from a food handler. Anyone who ate food or consumed a beverage at that location during that time frame should contact their health care provider. Since the hepatitis A and immune globulin vaccinations are only effective if given within two weeks of exposure, it's too late for a shot. Monitor your health for the symptoms of hepatitis A for the next 50 days. Those symptoms can include loss of appetite, weight … [Read more...]

E. coli O103 Outbreak Sickens 72 in 5 States; 8 Hospitalized

The E. coli O103 outbreak that started in Kentucky last week, with 20 sick, has exploded into an outbreak that has sickened at least 72 people in 5 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Those illnesses are confirmed. Eight people have been hospitalized. Barbara Fox, Public Information Officer with the Cabinet for Health and Family Affairs in Kentucky, told Food Poisoning Bulletin that 46 are sick in Kentucky, with 6 hospitalized. No source, such as a restaurant or grocery store, and no food, such as ground beef, lettuce, or sprouts, has been named yet.   In addition, no patients have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which is a complication of a Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) infection that can cause kidney failure. That … [Read more...]

Now 44 Sick in Unsolved Kentucky E. coli O103 Outbreak

At least 44 people who live in 24 Kentucky counties have lab-confirmed E. coli O103 infections, according to information from the Madison County Health Department in that state. Three of those patients live in Madison County. This information about this E. coli O103 outbreak was transmitted from the Kentucky Department of Public Health in an online meeting. The age range of patients is from 1 to 81 years, with a median age of 18. Twenty-five patients are female, and 19 are male. Six people have been hospitalized because they are so sick. Cases have also been reported in Ohio, Tennessee, and Georgia. Public health officials are working to solve this outbreak. What we know is that they have not identified a specific food or restaurant, but the fact that this outbreak is so … [Read more...]

Kentucky E. coli O103 Outbreak Rises to 44 Sick, TN, OH, GA Included

The Kentucky E. coli O103 outbreak has now risen to 44 sick, as of April 3, 2019, according to news reports. Six people have been hospitalized in this outbreak, but there is no mention if any have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure that can cause strokes. And there are 20 pending cases that are not yet lab-confirmed. The only official report to date from Kentucky Department of Health lists the outbreak total as 20, but that was posted on Friday, March 29, 2019. This is the largest E. coli outbreak in Kentucky since 2000. Dr. Mel Bennett, who heads Kentucky's infectious disease efforts, told WEKU that the outbreak has spread to Tennessee, Ohio, and Georgia. We do not know how many people are sickened in each of those states. Officials still think … [Read more...]

Hepatitis A Diagnosed In Employee at Crescent City Tavern in Dalton, GA

An employee at the Crescent City Tavern in downtown Dalton, Georgia has been diagnosed with hepatitis A, according to the Whitfield County Health Department. That employee, a food handler, worked while infectious during the time period of December 28, 2018 through January 31, 2019. That means that anyone who ate food or drank beverages during that time may have been exposed to the pathogenic virus. The vaccine is, however, only effective if given within two weeks of exposure. That means that it's too late for a vaccine for all patrons. But the Whitfield County Health Department, through the Child Health Program, is offering vaccines at no cost, regardless of insurance status. That facility is located at 800 Professional Boulevard in Dalton. It's always a good idea to get the … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Recalled Gravel Ridge Farms Eggs in AL, GA, TN

A Salmonella outbreak has been announced in a recall of Gravel Ridge Farms Cage Free Large Eggs by the FDA. The announcement did not state the number of people sickened, where they live, age ranges, or if anyone was hospitalized. The firm was notified by the FDA on September 6, 2018 that their eggs may be contaminated with Salmonella. The recalled product is Gravel Ridge Farms Large Cage Free Eggs, in single dozen and 2.5 dozen flats. The UPC on the product is 7-06970-38444-6, and the use-by dates on the eggs are 7/25/18 though 10/3/18. The eggs were sold between 6/25/2018 and 9/6/6/2018. The eggs were sold mostly in restaurants and retail stores in Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee. In Atlanta, these stores carried the eggs: Candler Park Market, Grant Park Market, Westview Corner … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Associated With Plain Nuts Catering Over; No Source Identified, Says Lawyer

The Salmonella outbreak in Georgia that was associated with Plain Nuts Catering & Deli in Newton County has ended, with investigators not able to identify the source of the pathogenic bacteria, according to the Newton County Health Department. Those sickened ate food prepared by that facility at several private events and restaurant meals. A full investigation was conducted, including interviewing patients, analysis of a survey completed by will and well event attendees, and inspection of the catering facility. The survey results pointed to chicken as a statistically implicated source, but samples of chicken and foods containing chicken tested negative. The report points out that it's "often difficult to pinpoint specific foods as the cause of an outbreak." The latest … [Read more...]

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