/Health District Confirms 1 Salmonella Case Linked to Current Outbreak

Health District confirms 1 Salmonella case linked to current outbreak

July 10, 2008

LAS VEGAS – The Southern Nevada Health District received confirmation that one local case of Salmonella Saintpaul is linked to the current nationwide outbreak. There are a total of 11 cases reported in Nevada, most of which are in Northern Nevada.

The health district receives reports of more than 100 cases of Salmonella infections each year. People who are infected with Salmonella will frequently develop symptoms that might include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours following exposure to the bacteria. The illness typically lasts four to seven days and most people recover without treatment; however, some patients will require hospitalization due to severe fluid loss caused by the diarrhea. Not all people who are infected with Salmonella will develop symptoms, however, asymptomatic people can become a source of infection. Physicians and laboratories are required to report confirmed cases of Salmonella infections to the health district.

Salmonella bacteria are found in the intestinal tracts of people and animals and is typically transmitted to humans by eating contaminated food. Such food is usually of animal origin, such as eggs, beef, poultry or raw milk, although in recent years it has also been associated with uncooked fruit and vegetables.

An infected person can spread the illness for several days to months. People with diarrhea should stay home from school, work or childcare. Most can return when the diarrhea stops.

Frequent hand washing can prevent the spread of Salmonella. People should avoid raw milk or undercooked eggs, meat or poultry; meat should be cooked to well done. Fruits and vegetables should be thoroughly washed before eaten. Cross-contamination of foods should be avoided with uncooked meat separated from fruits and vegetables, cooked food or ready-to-eat food. Hands, cutting boards, counters, knives or other utensils should be washed thoroughly after handling uncooked food. Hands should be thoroughly washed before and after handling any food. People who have salmonellosis should not prepare or serve food or beverages until they are shown to no longer be carrying the Salmonella bacteria.

More information about Salmonella can be found on the health district website www.SouthernNevadaHealthDistrict.org.

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The Southern Nevada Health District serves as the local public health authority for Clark County, Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite and North Las Vegas. The agency safeguards the public health of the community’s residents and visitors through innovative programs, regulations, and initiatives focused on protecting and promoting their health and well-being. More information about the Health District, its programs, services, and the regulatory oversight it provides is available at www.SNHD.info.