usmap.gifOver the last month the focus in the outbreak world has been the devastation brought by Listeria – tainted cantaloupe and now Salmonella – tainted pine nuts. However, E. coli O157:H7 seems to have a hold on at least for states.

Michigan – Health officials say E. coli bacteria have sickened two children and one adult from mid-Michigan. The Mid-Michigan District Health Department said in a statement Wednesday that both children from the Maple Rapids area have been hospitalized. The health department said a third person from the area about 30 miles northwest of Lansing was recovering from an E. coli infection.

Missouri – The St. Louis County Department of Health says it is investigating the source of E. coli that has sickened at least 14 people this week. A press release did not state when or where the first case was reported. More information was expected to be available Thursday.

North Carolina – Three children are in hospital intensive care units after an outbreak of a potentially deadly type of food poisoning that could be linked to the North Carolina State Fair. The Wake County health department said Wednesday that seven children and two adults have been infected with E. coli bacteria. Eight of the nine victims attended the state fair that ended last weekend.

Wisconsin – Wisconsin’s Green County Health Department and the state Division of Public Health identified four Abe Lincoln Elementary School students infected with the same strain of E. coli O157:H7 responsible for 9 illnesses and one death between mid-August and mid-September. No source has been identified for either the four recent cases or the nine earlier illnesses.

  • What is happening is that we are seeing huge gaps in the food safety net, together with better investigative techniques and reporting. I think we also see the effect of a very serious pathogen in E coli that has become entrenched in our food animals, thus in our food supply, and in our environment. The failure of agriculture to control E. coli has contaminated the entire food supply, our water and soil.
    These disasterous events will continue and escalate due to our inability to create a nationwide food safety system form farm to fork and the propensity of these pathogens to proliferate.
    Glaring deficiencies exist; most notably, flaws in basic sanitation and related practices found at the farm, restaurants, and in the transportation sector. These correctable conditions if left uncorrected allow for the persistence and spread of a variety of deadly infectious agents and result in the outbreaks we are seeing now. There are multiple causation routes developing for numerous pathogens and they are digging in and becoming entrenched
    While we concentrate our prevention efforts in the supply chain, remember that not addressing the starting and ending points of this chain thwarts all other purposes.

  • Annette Irwin

    Do you have any update on the status of the 2 childen in Michigan that were hospitalized in Michigan with HUS. I live in Lansing and cannot find any news locally on how they are doing or if any further leads have been found on how or where they picked up the e-coli.