More than 250 people have fallen sick in 18 states because chicken from California infected with Salmonella Heidelberg. But because of the government shutdown, the CDC’s food-borne illness tracking experts aren’t on the case.
I know that we will not be conducting multi-state outbreak investigations. States may continue to find outbreaks, but we won’t be doing the cross-state consultation and laboratory work to link outbreaks that might cross state borders.
The good news is that state health departments and the USDA are still working, and has tracked the infected chicken to three Foster Farms facilities, they announced Oct. 8. They also noted that the outbreak is ongoing, and no chicken has been recalled.
The three facilities they noted as being linked to the outbreak use the packaging codes P6137; P6137A and P7632 — which can help consumers avoid these products. Cooking the chicken to an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees will destroy any disease-causing bacteria.
Common symptoms of salmonella food poisoning include diarrhoea, cramps, and fever that typically start 8 to 72 hours after eating food with high levels of the bacteria. Some people also get chills, nausea and vomiting, lasting up to seven days, the USDA says.
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