September 24, 2021

Washington E. coli Outbreak Spreads to Four Counties, at Least Six Sick

The Washington E. coli outbreak has now spread to four counties with at least six confirmed cases, according to the Washington State Department of Health (DOH). This E. coli O157:H7 outbreak may be linked to fresh produce. The official case count stands at six, even though the individual county health departments are reporting higher totals. King County says it has seven cases, while Snohomish County claims two. Benton and Walla Walla Counties claim four patients, for a total of 13 patients. The difference is that the Washington DOH only reports confirmed cases infected with E. coli O157:H7 that have been genetically linked, while the cases the counties are reporting may still be under investigation. In the official state case count, there is one case between the ages of 0 and 9, … [Read more...]

Two E. coli Cases in Snohomish County, Washington Added to King County

Two E. coli cases in Snohomish County, Washington state, have been identified, according to a press release from the Snohomish Health District. These cases, in a 20-year-old woman and a 10-year-old child, are apparently connected to the seven children who are sick with Shiga Toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) infections in King County, Washington. The child has been hospitalized, but no further information about him or her has been shared with the public for patient privacy considerations. Dr. Chris Spitters, Health Information Officer for the Snohomish Health District, said in a statement, "The exact source of E. coli contamination can be difficult to pinpoint, but public health interviews lead us to believe the cases may be linked to eating fresh produce. While we continue working … [Read more...]

Seven Children Sick in Seattle E. coli Outbreak: Produce Possible Source

In the Seattle E. coli outbreak that has sickened at least seven children, officials now think that some type of produce is the source of the pathogen, according to Seattle King County Public Health. The case count has not changed. All cases are under the age of 15, with three under the age of five. Officials have identified "multiple types of fresh produce, mostly organic," in most of the cases but they cannot as of yet rule out other possibilities of the source of the illnesses.  The notice states, "We are still uncertain if these cases share the same source of their infection or not." All of the children have symptoms consistent with a Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) infection, which include abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that is often bloody. Two … [Read more...]

Seven Children Sick in E. coli Outbreak in King County, Washington State

According to a notice posted by the King County Public Health Department, there are seven children sick in an E. coli outbreak in King County. All are under the age of 14, and three  children are under the age of five. Six of the children have been hospitalized. The source of the pathogen has not yet been determined. This new E. coli outbreak in King County has illness onset dates ranging from April 17, 2021 to April 29, 2021. The cases were reported to government officials between April 22, 2021 and May 1, 2021. The investigation is ongoing. Officials have not identified any restaurants, foods, or other sources in common among all of these cases. In fact, investigators do not know if the patients even share the same source of the pathogen. All seven children developed the … [Read more...]

Dungeness Valley Creamery Raw Milk Linked to WA Campylobacter Outbreak

A Washington Campylobacter outbreak is linked to Dungeness Valley Creamery raw milk, according to a news release by the Washington State Department of Health. Five lab-positive cases have been identified. The raw milk was purchased in Clallam, Skagit, Kitsap, and Clark Counties. We don't know the patient ages, illness onset dates, or whether anyone has been hospitalized. Dungeness Valley Creamery has issued a voluntary recall of all raw milk products with a Best Buy date of April 13, 2021 or earlier. These products may be contaminated with Campylobacter, which can cause serious  illness. The recalled raw milk items are bottled in gallon, half-gallon, quart, and pint containers. The raw milk was sold to customers in western Washington state in the company's on-farm store, outside … [Read more...]

Another Mystery E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Ends With 22 Sick

Another mystery E. coli O157:H7 outbreak has ended with no source, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)> The FDA and USDA collected different types of dates but were unable to identify a food source of this multistate outbreak. The outbreak is over as of March 11, 2021. Last summer and fall, the CDC announced two other mystery E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks that sickened a total of 44 people, hospitalizing 18. The pathogen in one of those outbreaks was linked to bacteria that sickened people in a 2019 romaine lettuce outbreak. A total of 22 people in 7 states were sickened in this latest outbreak.  The case count by state is: Arkansas (9), Maryland (1), New York (1), Oklahoma (6), Texas (1), Virginia (2), and Washington (2). Illness onset dates ranged … [Read more...]

Remove Bird Feeders to Fight Salmonella Outbreak in Birds

There has been a "dramatic increase" in Washington state in the population of pine siskins, a tiny migrating bird. A shortage of conifer cones, the typical food for this bird, has caused this increase. And they are eating at backyard feeders. There has been an explosion of Salmonella infections among those birds. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) recommends that people remove bird feeders to stop this Salmonella outbreak. All bird species are susceptible to this bacteria that can also threaten human health. Birds are a source of Salmonella and have been known to infect crops with their droppings. Backyard bird feeders are a particular risk since people have to handle them frequently. And the birds may contaminate food in backyard gardens. The Progressive … [Read more...]

Quinault Tribe Dungeness Crab Recalled For Domoic Acid Contamination

Quinault Tribe Dungeness crab is being recalled in Washington state for possible domoic acid contamination. These crabs are live or un-eviscerated. Domoic acid is a naturally occurring toxin that is produced by algae. It can be harmful to humans if consumed. Domoic acid causes amnesiac shellfish poisoning. Symptoms of this illness include vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea within 24 hours of exposure. In some cases, ASP can cause permanent short-term memory loss. All live or un-eviscerated crab that was harvested from December 23, 2020 to Debmer 28, 2020 from the Point Chehalis to Destruction Island GHPO056 zone by the Quinault Tribe are recalled. The recalled Quinault Tribe Dungeness crab was sold to food processors in Washington state, with further distribution to wholesalers and … [Read more...]

Thomson International Onion Salmonella Outbreak Number One of 2020

The Thomson International onion Salmonella Newport outbreak was the number one multistate food poisoning outbreak of 2020, sickening at least 1,127 people in 48 states. One hundred sixty seven people were hospitalized because they were so sick. The case count by state is: Alaska (25), Alabama (2), Arizona (39), Arkansas (2), California (128), Colorado (32), Connecticut (2), Delaware (2), Florida (8), Georgia (11), Hawaii (3), Idaho (43), Illinois (54), Indiana (4), Iowa (31), Kansas (3), Kentucky (3), Maine (6), Maryland (7), Massachusetts (2), Michigan (47), Minnesota (19), Mississippi (5), Missouri (11), Montana (72), Nebraska (10), Nebraska (10), Nevada (11), New Hampshire (1), New Jersey (12), New Mexico (3), New York (14), North Carolina (6), North Dakota (9), Ohio (11), … [Read more...]

Cozy Vale Raw Milk Recalled For Possible E. coli Contamination

Cozy Vale raw milk is being recalled for possible E. coli contamination, according to a piece in The Olympian. That same dairy also recalled raw milk for possible E. coli contamination in 2017. The Cozy Vale Creamery is located in Tenino, Washington. The company is not aware of any illnesses associated with these recalled products. The voluntary recall is for gallon, half-gallon, quart, and pint containers of raw, or unpasteurized, milk that were sold in retail stores in Western Washington state. The recalled products have best by dates of December 12 to December 23, 2020. The pathogen was found in routine sampling of retail raw cream conducted by the Washington State Department of Agriculture. Tests did not find the bacteria in skim and whole raw milk products, but all of these … [Read more...]

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