October 15, 2019

Legionnaires’ Outbreak at San Quentin State Prison

A Legionnaires' Disease outbreak at the San Quentin State Prison has forced that facility to shut off the water. There are six confirmed cases, and at least 51 other possible cases. Those prisoners who have been diagnosed with the illness have been transferred to hospitals for treatment. The possible cases are under observation at the prison's medical unit. Portable toilets are being brought in for the prisoners' use. The kitchen has stopped producing meals; inmates are eating boxed meals. The prisoners who may be sick live in all areas of the prison. The Marin County Health Department is investigating the outbreak. No visitors have been allowed in the facility since the outbreak began. No prisoners can be transferred in or out of the facility as well. Inmates are being told they … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak at TN Prison Linked to Tyson Chicken

A Salmonella Heidelberg outbreak in 2013 at a Tennessee correctional facility that was linked to mechanically separated Tyson chicken sickened nine people. Twenty-two percent of those sickened were hospitalized; no deaths were reported. All of the ill persons were incarcerated at a single correctional facility in the state. Traceback and other investigations found that mechanically separated chicken produced by Tyson Foods was the source of the 2013 outbreak. Mechanically separated chicken is a paste-like meat product that is made by forcing meat through a sieve to separate bone from the edible part. The product then will have bacteria spread throughout it, similar to ground meats. Since prisoners are literally a "captive audience", it may be considered cruel and unusual punishment … [Read more...]

Food Safety Violations Found at Kansas Prisons

Inspections conducted at prisons in Kansas by the Kansas Department of Corrections has found consistent food safety violations in the prison system's kitchens. Almost 340 inspections conducted between January, 2013 and July 2014 at 19 facilities found repeated deficiencies and noncompliance. It is considered cruel and unusual punishment to not take adequate care of prisoners, who are under complete government control. In addition, when outbreaks occur, taxpayer money is then spent giving medical care to prisoners and investigating the problem. Lawsuits against prisons have been filed and won by the families of prisoners who have been sickened in outbreaks at prisons and jails. The violations recorded in the inspections included not keeping proper temperature logs, not having inmate … [Read more...]

Quarantine at Jackson, MI Parnall Prison as More Sickened

The outbreak at the Parnall Correctional Facility in Jackson has expanded. Now at least 150 people are sick, a dramatic increase from the 30 ill persons reported earlier in the week. Democratic candidate for governor Mark Schauer called on Governor Rick Snyder to end the three year contract with Aramark, which eliminated more than 300 state jobs. The Detroit Free Press reports that a partial quarantine has been ordered; sick inmates are not being allowed to see visitors and no inmates are being moved in or out of the prison. The Michigan Corrections Organization (MCO) union, SEIU Local 526M points out that more maggots were found in the food, in the second incident in one week. The union has been reporting about problems with Aramark, the privatized provider, for weeks. Fruit flies and … [Read more...]

Food Poisoning Outbreak in Jackson, MI Prison

According to the Michigan Corrections Organization (MCO), SEIU Local 526M, Michigan governor Rick Snyder is ordering performance reviews of a private company that provides foods to prison inmates. As of Sunday, June 29, 2014, 30 prisoners were treated for food poisoning after maggots were found near a food service line at the Parnall Correctional Facility. And MCO was told that "maggots were found on potatoes at RGC. Initially, Aramark staff told inmates to separate the bad potatoes from the good, and wash off the good potatoes. A facility administrator stepped in and the potatoes were not used." That provider, Aramark Correctional Services, was warned earlier this month because of food shortages and unapproved changes in menus. The governor told reporters, "that shouldn't happen, in … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak at Oklahoma Prisons

NewsOK.com is reporting that seven inmates in Oklahoma state prisons have been hospitalized in the the last three weeks with Salmonella food poisoning. At the women's Eddie Warrior Correctional Center in Taft, 47 people are sick. At Jim E. Hamilton Correctional Center in Hodgen, 37 inmates are ill; five of those people were hospitalized. One inmate at the Joseph Harp Correction Center in Lexington and one person at Bill Johnson Correctional Center in Alva were hospitalized. The illnesses began in late October. Officials say that the cases don't rise to the level of an outbreak, even though the definition of an outbreak is two or more unrelated persons ill with the same strain of pathogenic bacteria. Salmonella outbreaks are usually linked to food that is not properly cooked or held … [Read more...]

Gastrointestinal Illness Outbreak at Cook County Jail

Melaney Arnold, spokeswoman for the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), told Food Poisoning Bulletin that there is an outbreak of "gastrointestinal illness" at the Cook County Jail in Chicago. The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) reported the outbreak. Illnesses are resolving in about 24 hours, and no inmates have required hospitalization. The IDPH is working with CDPH and Cermak Health Services of Cook County on infection control measures and specimen testing. The quarantine order was issued by Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart. Visitation is not allowed under quarantine rules, and all of the living, dining, bathroom, and "high touch" surface areas are being disinfected. In addition, Division II staff are being monitored to try to contain the spread of the illness. … [Read more...]

Norovirus Outbreak at Stateville Illinois Correctional Center

A suspected norovirus outbreak has been declared at the Stateville Correctional Facility in Illinois. Illinois Department of Corrections spokesperson Melaney Arnold told Food Poisoning Bulletin that approximately 144 inmates reported becoming ill after Christmas. No patients have been hospitalized.  Food testing is underway to try to determine the source of the outbreak. The Department of Corrections and the Illinois Department of Public Health are working on the outbreak investigation and control efforts. Samples have been sent to the state laboratory, and public health officials are waiting for results. Norovirus is extremely contagious and can be spread person-to-person, through projectile vomiting, touching contaminated surfaces, or through eating contaminated food and drink. It … [Read more...]

Prison Hooch Sends 7 Inmates To ICU with Botulism

Prison hooch, or homemade alcohol,  is the likely source of a botulism outbreak at an Arizona prison that sent seven inmates to intensive care. The seven inmates, all from Special Management Unit 1 of the Arizona State Prison Complex Eyman in Florence, were hospitalized over the weekend. Botulism is not spread through person-to-person contact. Although it can develop in contaminated wounds or through IV drug use, it most often develops after eating or drinking food that is tainted with the toxin. Botulism poisoning  must be treated with a course of special anti-toxin, the stockpile of which is controlled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Health officials in Pinal County, where the prison is located, suspect that the inmates became ill after drinking  hooch made … [Read more...]

E. coli Outbreak at Saginaw Correctional Facility in Michigan

John C. Cordell, Public Information Specialist with the Michigan Department of Corrections told Food Poisoning Bulletin that there is an outbreak of STEC, or Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, at the Saginaw Correctional Facility. The facility is quarantined with no prisoner transfers, no group programming or prisoner visitation. So far, 89 prisoners and seven staff have been confirmed ill with the E. coli bacteria. Four prisoners have been hospitalized, but there are no cases of hemolytic uremic syndrome. The hospitalizations have been for dehydration. Most cases occurred from August 27 to August 30, 2012. The outbreak may be over, since no cases were identified on September 3 or 4, 2012. The facility may be able to return to normal operations at the end of this week, since the … [Read more...]

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