Texas bearing brunt of salmonella outbreak

Published: Sep. 28, 2021 at 7:04 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - Texas, along with 28 other states, is seeing a salmonella outbreak, with Texas currently at the top of the list.

As of right now, the salmonella outbreak has not hit Wichita County or Texoma.

The CDC has reported over 500 cases so far in Texas, with most being in north Texas but health officials believe they have found the source of the problem and can start taking action to prevent any more outbreaks.

“Primarily what they have seen is cilantro lime jalapeno kind of mixture which is typically seen at our Mexican style restaurants,” said Brandi Smith, Epidemiology Nurse at the Wichita Falls - Wichita County Public Health District.

Health officials said the Waco area, Colin County and Dallas County are where the clusters of outbreaks for salmonella have taken place. At this point, there is no outbreak in Wichita County, but there are steps to take to prevent salmonella in your food and health officials say you should do this every time.

“The prevention for salmonella is going to make sure that you wash all of your fruits and vegetables before you consume those,” Smith said. “Specifically right now, it is the cilantro limes and jalapenos but that goes for anything. A couple of other prevention tips: you want to keep your meats and poultry separated while you are handling those. Always wash your hands, wash those utensils, counter-tops, cutting boards, those kinds of things once you finished handling those meat products.”

Symptoms of salmonella infection include diarrhea, vomiting and fever. Health officials say most people who get infected recover without treatment after four to seven days, but to call your doctor if you are concerned.

As of right now, health officials believe that they have found a possible source and they can start eliminating the problem.

“We kind of have the culprit so that helps to squash the number of cases and get a better handle on it,” Smith said. “So we don’t have any cause of concern to go out and look at all of those restaurants or look at those kind of products at this point.”

There have been around 80 hospitalizations in Texas with this salmonella infection but no deaths as of right now.

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