December 9, 2016

Hepatitis A Strawberries Distributed to Schools and Restaurants

In an unexpected announcement, the FDA says that the recalled frozen strawberries imported from Egypt that are linked to a hepatitis A outbreak in the eastern United States were sold to schools and institutions across the country. In the official outbreak linked to Tropical Smoothie Cafe products, five of the 134 people sickened did not consume those products. The FDA says that frozen strawberry products recalled by The International Company for Agricultural Production and Processing (ICAPP) may have been served in food service operations as recently as October 27, 2016. The products were "included but not limited to" whole, sliced, and sugared strawberries and diced strawberries. The five companies that received frozen strawberry products from ICAPP are: C.H. Belt of Lake … [Read more...]

FDA Bans Certain Egyptian Frozen Strawberries for Hepatitis A

The hepatitis A outbreak linked to Tropical Smoothie Cafe products that were made with frozen strawberries has sickened at least 134 people, according to the FDA. Those berries were allegedly imported from Egypt, according to government officials. Now the FDA has issued an import alert banning frozen strawberries from one Egyptian facility, although a portion of the alert with details about the ban is redacted. The only portion in the "notes" field on the alert that isn't blacked out is the phrase "Problem(s): Hepatitis A (1b)." The facility is the International Company for Agricultural Production & Processing. The "1b" denotes the strain of hepatitis A. A notice posted on the Virginia Department of Health website in August 2016 states that testing on the patients has confirmed … [Read more...]

CDC Updates Hepatitis A Outbreak Linked to Frozen Strawberries

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is updating its investigation into the hepatitis A outbreak linked to frozen strawberries imported from Egypt. As of October 17, 2016, 134 people with the illness have been reported from nine states. The outbreak case count by state is: Arkansas (1), California (1), Maryland (12), New York (3), North Carolina (1), Oregon (1), Virginia (107), West Virginia (7), and Wisconsin (1). Fifty-two ill persons have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported. The patient in Oregon purchased smoothies from a Tropical Smoothie Cafe in Virginia while traveling. The outbreak case count is so high in Virginia because Tropical Smoothie Cafe restaurants in that state, as well as in Maryland, North Carolina, and West Virginia, received the … [Read more...]

Tropical Smoothie Hepatitis A Outbreak Starts to Slow

The hepatitis A outbreak linked to frozen strawberries imported from Egypt and served in Tropical Smoothie Cafe products has slowed down, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The press release says, "information at this time does not indicate an ongoing risk of acquiring hepatitis A virus infection at Tropical Smoothie Cafes, as the contaminated food product has been removed as of August 8, 2016." But there may still be people diagnosed with infections from those products. Symptoms of hepatitis A can take as long as 50 days to appear. That means that someone sickened on August 8, 2016 could start feeling sick September 27, 2016. That person then has to go to the doctor and be diagnosed before they would be included in the outbreak case count. The CDC's … [Read more...]

Tropical Smoothie Virginia Hepatitis A Outbreak Grows to 105

The hepatitis A outbreak linked to Tropical Smoothie Cafes has grown to include 105 sick in Virginia alone. The CDC has not updated their investigation into this outbreak since September 16, 2016. The CDC's numbers for those sickened in other states are: Arkansas (1), Maryland (12), New York (3), North Carolina (1), Oregon (1), West Virginia (6), and Wisconsin (1). That means there are at least 130 people sick with hepatitis A infections in this particular outbreak. In Virginia, the case count by region is: 60 Northern, 15 Northwest, 17 Eastern, 13 Central, 0 Southwest. About 35% of those sickened have been hospitalized because their illnesses are so serious. The patient age range is 14 to 70. Illness onset dates are from early May through September 2016. This outbreak is slowing … [Read more...]

Virginia Hepatitis A Tropical Smoothie Outbreak Grows to 102 Sick

The hepatitis A outbreak in Virginia associated with Tropical Smoothie Cafe has grown to include 102 people. All of those reported consuming a smoothie at Tropical Smoothie Cafe before they got sick. About 37% of those sickened in this outbreak have been hospitalized for their illness because they are so sick. . The 102 ill persons range in age from 14 to 70. The onset of illness dates range from early May through September. The case count by region is: 59 Northern, 15 Northwest, 16 Eastern, 12 Central, 0 Southwest. The CDC says that at least 25 others are sick in this outbreak, which brings the nationwide total to 127. Epidemiologic and traceback evidence indicate that frozen strawberries imported from Egypt used to make the smoothies are the likely source of this outbreak. The … [Read more...]

CDC Updates Tropical Smoothie Hepatitis A Numbers

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated the hepatitis A outbreak linked to frozen strawberries that were served at Tropical Smoothie Cafe locations in several states. Their numbers as of September 14, 2016 are 119. But Virginia updated their numbers on September 16, 2016 from 94 to 98, which means there are at least 123 people sickened in this outbreak. The case count by state is: Arkansas (1), Maryland (12), New York (3), North Carolina (1), Oregon (1), Virginia (98), West Virginia (6), and Wisconsin (1). Forty-seven ill persons have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported. The hospitalization rate in this outbreak is at 39%, which is about double the usual hospitalization rate in a hepatitis A outbreak. There is no explanation for this number. … [Read more...]

Now 98 Virginia Residents Sick with Hepatitis A

As of 12:00 pm on September 16, 2016, 98 Virginia residents who consumed a smoothie at Tropical Smoothie Cafe before August 8, 2016 have been diagnosed with hepatitis A. That brings the total sickened, including last week's numbers from the CDC, to 117. Other states with patients are North Carolina, Maryland, New York, Oregon, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. About 38% of those sickened, for whom information is available, have been hospitalized because their illnesses are so severe. The patient age range is from 14 to 70, and the illness onset dates range from early May through September. The count by region is: 57 Northern, 15 Northwest, 15 Eastern, 11 Central, 0 Southwest. Strawberries imported from Egypt that were used to make the smoothies have been named as the source of the … [Read more...]

Tropical Smoothie Virginia Hepatitis A Case Count Grows Again

As of September 14, 2016, 94 Virginia residents have tested positive for hepatitis A after consuming a smoothie at Tropical Smoothie Cafes in that state. That is an increase of seven cases in Virginia from the last update on September 12, 2016. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating this outbreak as well. Numbers from the CDC of patients in other states are: Maryland (10), New York (1), North Carolina (1), Oregon (1), West Virginia (5), and Wisconsin (1). That means that there are now at least 113 people sick in this outbreak. Nearly all of the ill persons interviewed reported drinking smoothies containing strawberries at Tropical Smoothie Cafe locations in Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia, according to the CDC. The Virginia … [Read more...]

Virginia Tropical Smoothie Hepatitis A Outbreak Grows to 85 Sick

The hepatitis A outbreak in Virginia, that is linked to Tropical Smooth Cafe strawberry products, has grown to include 85 people in that state alone, according to the Virginia Department of Health. That number is current as of September 12, 2016. Frozen strawberries imported from Egypt have been identified as the source of the virus. The patient age range is from 14 to 70 years old. Dates of illness onset range from early May through September. The count by region is: 48 Northern, 12 Northwest, 15 Eastern, 10 Central, 0 Southwest. About 40% of those sickened have been hospitalized because their illness is so serious. But there are people in this outbreak in other states who are sick too. According to the CDC, these are the case counts in other states: Maryland (10), New York (1), … [Read more...]

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