October 15, 2019

Northfork Bison E. coli Outbreak Ends With 33 Sick

The Northfork Bison E. coli outbreak has ended with 33 people sick in 8 states, according to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Eighteen people were hospitalized because they were so sick, and there were no deaths reported. The pathogens in this outbreak that made people sick were E. coli O103 and E. coli O121. The case count by state is: Connecticut (2), Florida (a6), Illinois (1), Michigan (1), Missouri (1), New Jersey (3), New York (14), and Pennsylvania (5). No cases of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure, were reported. Illness onset dates ranged from March 18, 2019 to August 11, 2019. The patient age range was from 6 to 80 years. Northfork Bison Distributions recalled its ground bison, called Bison Ground, and its ground bison … [Read more...]

Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee Hardest Hit in Ground Beef E. coli O103 Outbreak

The states that have been the hardest hit in the ground beef E. coli O103 outbreak are Georgia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Those states combined have 173 of the 196 people sickened in this outbreak. The outbreak does seem to be slowing down, according to the epidemiological Date of Illness Onset chart. Most cases were diagnosed in mid-March 2019, and have trailed off since then. But even though two companies have recalled raw ground beef products, the outbreak continues to grow. According to the epi chart, there could be as many as 50 more cases in this outbreak before it ends. States are investigating more illnesses that may be part of this outbreak. This outbreak actually begin in Kentucky, when public health officials there noticed a spike in E. coli cases. At first, … [Read more...]

Ground Beef E. coli O103 Outbreak Grows to 196 Sick

The ground beef E. coli O103 outbreak has now sickened at least 196 people in 10 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Twenty-eight people have been hospitalized because they are so sick. Two people have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). No one has died. That's an addition of 19 more ill persons since the last update on April 26, 2019. The patient case count by state is: Florida (5), Georgia (49), Illinois (1), Indiana (1), Kentucky (69), Minnesota (1), Mississippi (1), Ohio (12), Tennessee (55), and Virginia (2). The patient age range is from less than 1 year to 84 years, with a median age of 19. The hospitalization rate is 16%. The outbreak notice states that "Ill people in this outbreak ate ground beef from many sources. Some … [Read more...]

Kentucky, Georgia, Tennessee Hit Hardest in Ground Beef E. coli O103 Outbreak

Consumers in Kentucky, Georgia, and Tennessee have been hit hardest in the ground beef E. coli O103 outbreak that has sickened at least 177 people in 10 states. Those states alone have 158 sickened in this outbreak. According to CDC and FDA reports, no one has developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure, in this outbreak, and no one has died. But 21 people have been hospitalized because their illness is so severe. There have been two recalls of ground beef associated with this outbreak, although the CDC report states that there is no one business or brand that can account for all of the illnesses in this outbreak. K2D Foods recalled 113,424 pounds of raw ground beef products for possible E. coli O103 contamination on April 24, 2019. And Grant Park Packing … [Read more...]

Kentucky E. coli O103 Outbreak Case Count Stands at 65, 8 Hospitalized

The Kentucky E. coli O103 outbreak that is linked to ground beef is now at 65 confirmed cases. Eight people have been hospitalized, and none have developed HUS. Barbara Fox, Public Information Officer for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services in that state gave this information to Food Poisoning Bulletin. This outbreak started in Kentucky, when public health officials found that 20 people were sick with the same strain of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli bacteria in late March 2019.  The outbreak has grown by leaps and bounds. With information we now have, we know that at least 131 people in 6 states are sick. The case count by state is: Indiana (1), Georgia (27), Kentucky (65), Ohio (7), Tennessee (28), and Virginia (2). The patient age range is from less than 1 to 83, but the … [Read more...]

Lawyer Asks: Why Are There Ground Beef E. coli Outbreaks?

One April, 2019 morning, amidst the ongoing ground beef E. coli O103 outbreak affecting much of the east-central United States, one of the attorneys on the foodborne illness team at the Pritzker Hageman law firm began her weekly meal preparation ritual. She went to her freezer and grabbed two pounds of frozen ground beef, defrosted it, and put it in a frying pan to brown. She has said her family of four goes through so much ground beef that she regularly fill my freezer with a “quarter of beef” raised by her father and processed by a local butcher shop. Her family "lives on it". In the U.S., a family’s subsistence on ground beef is not uncommon. For 2018, Americans were projected to eat 222.2 pounds of meat and poultry, each. According to the self-proclaimed “best information … [Read more...]

CDC Says Ground Beef E. coli O103 Outbreak; 109 Now Sick

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released information today stating that preliminary information indicates that ground beef is the source of the E. coli O103 outbreak that started in Kentucky in late March 2019. And 109 people are now sick in this ground beef E. coli O103 outbreak; 17 have been hospitalized. In addition, Indiana has been added to the case count, with one person ill in that state. The case count by state is: Indiana (1), Georgia (17), Kentucky (54), Ohio (7), Tennessee (28), and Virginia (2). Illness onset dates range from March 2 to March 26, 2019. The patient age range is less than 1 year to 83, with a median age of 18. No cases of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which is a type of kidney failure, have been reported yet. Ill persons … [Read more...]

Twenty-One Sick in Tennessee E. coli O103 Outbreak

Twenty-one people are sick in the Tennessee E. coli O103 outbreak that has also sickened people in Georgia, Kentucky, Ohio, and Virginia. The outbreak was first noticed in Kentucky in late March 2019. The cases exploded in one week from 20 sick to more than 72. And officials do not know what caused this outbreak. There has been no mention by public health officials about possible sources, although news reports have mentioned ground beef, chicken, and American cheese. What officials have said is that they think exposure to fast food may be associated with this outbreak; if not fast food, then some other type of food distribution system, since the illnesses are so widespread. It's unusual that so many people are sick with the same strain of pathogen and  no one knows the source. To … [Read more...]

How is Ground Beef Contaminated with E. coli Bacteria?

E. coli outbreaks are typically associated with certain foods. There have been Shiga toxin-producing E. coli outbreaks linked to raw milk, raw sprouts, ground beef, and leafy greens in the past few years. A 2015 study found that most E. coli outbreaks are linked to beef. But how is ground beef contaminated with E. coli bacteria? The type of E. coli bacteria that causes serious human illness is called Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC). That means the bacteria make a toxin that makes you very sick when it gets into your bloodstream. The government classifies these pathogens into two main groups: E. coli O157:H7, and the non-O157 serogroup, which includes E. coli O26, O111, O103, O121, and O145. All together, those six account for 75% of all STEC infections in the U.S. So how … [Read more...]

JBS Tolleson Ground Beef Salmonella Newport Outbreak Ends With 403 Sick

The JBS Tolleson ground beef Salmonella Newport outbreak has ended, with at least 403 people sick in 30 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). One hundred seventeen people were hospitalized because they were so sick; there were no deaths reported. Officials are warning consumers that, even though the official outbreak is over, this recalled ground beef could still be in home freezers. The ground beef was packaged under many different brand names and sold from July 26, 2018 to September 7, 2018. Almost seven million pounds of ground beef was recalled on October 4, 2018, and an additional 5.2 million pounds of beef products were recalled on December 4, 2018. Check your freezer to see if you have any of these products on hand. Recalled products … [Read more...]

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