The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has tracked a drug-resistant salmonella outbreak, which has affected 100 people in 29 states, back to certain raw chicken products.
The Salmonella infections have been linked to raw chicken products, but regulators have not identified any one specific source, product, or common supplier.
So far, 92 people have become sick across 29 states, including California, Washington, Texas, Nebraska, Missouri, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and Maine. There have been no reported deaths, but at least 21 people have been hospitalized form food poisoning.
Several types of raw chicken products from a variety of sources have tested positive for contamination, including chicken pieces, ground pieces, whole chickens, live chickens, and dog food. The diverse nature of affected products indicates the outbreak is widespread across the chicken industry. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service is monitoring the outbreak. Laboratory testing indicates this strain of Salmonella is resistant to 13 types of antibiotics.
Health officials recommend consumers always handle raw chicken carefully and cook thoroughly. Avoid washing raw poultry before cooking because washing it can allow germs to spread to other foods and surfaces from splashing water. Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly and frequently after handling chicken. Always cook chicken to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit to kill harmful bacteria.
Salmonella illnesses usually begins 12 to 72 hours after swallowing the bacteria. Most people experience diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps, but will recover within one week of becoming sick. In some cases it may last longer or pose a threat to patients who have weakened immune systems.
Contact a doctor if a high fever of 101 degrees Fahrenheit continues to linger, blood in the stool is noted, or frequent vomiting that prevents keeping liquid from staying down occurs.