New details in Salmonella outbreak affecting South Florida
DORAL, Fla. (WSVN) -- Several South Florida residents have been hit by a nationwide outbreak.
The focus is on a company called Foster Farms and three of its California plants, but the effects have been felt nationwide, including South Florida.
The State Health Department revealed Thursday three cases of salmonella were confirmed in Miami-Dade County. "Most of them, they don't remember," Dr. Alvaro Mejia of the Miami-Dade Health Department said. "They went to the doctors and the doctor ordered tests."
There was another case in Brevard County.
About 278 people have become ill in 18 states from California to Florida and beyond, including Alaska and Hawaii.
The effects are so widespread, the chicken at the plants are sold under a variety of brand names, such as:
-Simple truth organic
Specifically consumers are advised to avoid all chicken with plant numbers:
"What we're learning is that this is actually different strains that are resistant to some of the common antibiotics that we use out there to treat salmonella poisoning," Dr. Marty Makary of Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions said.
The outbreak started in March. The Miami-Dade cases appeared in July.
The USDA drew a link to the California facilities in September and the CDC said the most recent illness began two weeks ago.
Symptoms can occur within 12-72 hours and include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps.
"Those people who have low immune systems or those people who have kids or the elderly-- elderly and kids are particularly at risk," Health Inspector Dr. Tom Hopkins said.
To combat salmonella in general, food safety experts suggest thoroughly cooking poultry, meats and eggs, using a meat thermometer, if need be, and you should immediately wash your hands, kitchen surfaces and utensils.
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