Brazos County Health Department (BCHD) officials in conjunction with the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) are investigating an outbreak of the Salmonella Typhimurium -Ohio serotype.
Health officials began investigating a cluster of cases in September 2013 and have continued to have cases reported intermittently since that time. A total of 30 initial cases have been confirmed, with 26 of the cases being residents of Brazos County or have traveled to Brazos County. No deaths have been reported.
Through the course of the food borne outbreak investigation, Fuego’s Tortilla Grill Restaurant became of statistical significance. Environmental samples were obtained from the restaurant 05/13/2014.
Today, the DSHS Laboratory reported that 4 of the 36 samples obtained from the restaurant tested positive for Ohio strain. A specific exposure source, such as food handling procedures, food supply or an infected employee has not been specifically identified, but is currently under investigation.
BCHD is working very closely with Fuego’s Restaurant to find the source of bacteria, and how to prevent this type of event from recurring. Fuego’s Restaurant’s management has been cooperative during this investigation, and has closed voluntarily today, when they received the news about the lab samples.
This is a good time to stress the importance of food safety, proper temperature ranges, and adequate gloves and hand hygiene for everyone preparing food this holiday weekend.
Symptoms of Salmonella infection include headache, stomach pain, diarrhea, nausea and sometimes vomiting. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people recover without treatment.
In some cases people with severe diarrhea may need to be hospitalized. People with symptoms should drink plenty of water, get extra rest and visit a doctor as soon as possible.
Consumers also are advised to: (1) Contact your healthcare provider if symptoms occur, and (2) Wash your hands thoroughly, and often, with soap and warm water especially after going to the restroom and before preparing or serving food.
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