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Jimmy John's Restaurants in Wisconsin and Illinois Cited in Salmonella Outbreak

In a recent blog post, we talked about the recent multi-state Salmonella outbreak that was linked to raw bean sprouts served at Jimmy John's restaurants in Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. Currently, the outbreak is being investigated by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Illinois Department of Public Health, and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

When a food poisoning outbreak is linked to a specific food retailer or distributor, the responsible party may be required to take certain steps, such as recalling the contaminated product, to protect consumers from further illness. In other cases, the responsible party voluntarily makes changes and takes precautions to eliminate the chance of further illnesses occurring because of their product. A recent example of a retailer taking steps to protect its consumers is Chipotle's publicized changes to their food handling measures after it was linked to an E.Coli outbreak.

Jimmy John's Measures to Reduce Further Illnesses

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Recent Multi-State Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Raw Sprouts

An outbreak of Salmonella that caused eight people to become ill was recently linked to raw bean sprouts served at Jimmy John's restaurants in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois. As a precautionary measure, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended that consumers avoid eating raw sprouts from Jimmy John's restaurants until the cause of the outbreak has been identified and the sprouts are certified to be safe for human consumption again.

Currently, the CDC is working with state agencies in Illinois and Wisconsin to determine the cause of the outbreak. It is possible to trace a food poisoning outbreak to its source, but this can take time and requires cooperation from multiple parties, including the restaurant or retailer that sold the contaminated food, local health departments, and the infected patients themselves.

The CDC's Recommendations for Avoiding Illness

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Can Restaurant Review Websites Help Me Avoid Food Poisoning?

A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association illustrated how restaurant review website Yelp helped the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene uncover 10 food poisoning outbreaks between 2012 and 2017. The researchers who conducted the study used a computer program that scanned Yelp reviews for specific food poisoning-related keywords like “vomit” and “sick.” After successfully uncovering local outbreaks through the program, the researchers hope to use it to track foodborne illnesses in other cities.

Studying How User Reviews can be Used to Trace Outbreaks

The researchers followed up with many of the reviewers about their symptoms, which items they consumed, and whether their dining companions became ill as well. In doing so, they tracked a few outbreaks that were not reported to health authorities. It is not uncommon for an individual to simply let his or her illness run its course, especially if the illness does not require the victim to receive medical attention.

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E.Coli Outbreak Reaches 13 States, One Victim Dead So Far

After an E.Coli outbreak left 40 people sick and one dead across Canada, it came to the United States, and since November of 2017, it has resulted in 17 recorded cases of food poisoning. Among these cases, five victims were hospitalized, two of whom developed hemolytic uremic syndrome. One of the hospitalized victims died as a result of the illness. The cases in the United States were primarily concentrated in the Northeast, but did include reports from across the nation.

Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has not confirmed a specific source of the E.Coli bacteria, Consumer Reports magazine is warning Americans to avoid consuming romaine lettuce until the outbreak is traced to a definitive source. 41 of the reported cases in Canada were linked to consuming romaine lettuce, and the bacteria found causing the illnesses in the United States is genetically similar to the type of E.Coli linked to the illnesses reported in Canada.

Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome

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New Year's Resolutions to Keep You Healthy in 2018

Make 2018 a year about focusing on your health. There is more to a healthy lifestyle than simply eating a balanced diet and exercising; being in tune with your body to determine when something is wrong can make it easier and faster for you to get the medical care you need when you need it.

One way to protect your health and your family's health is to educate yourself about food poisoning, its symptoms, its treatment, and its prevention. Incorporate the following guidelines into your day-to-day life this year to make it one of your healthiest yet.

Practice Safe Food Handling Procedures

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