Friday, April 25, 2008

Malt-O-Meal Update From CDC

The CDC has updated its status report on the Salmonella Agona outbreak that has been linked to Malt-O-Meal puffed cereals. As of April 22nd, according to CDC, there are a total of 21 confirmed victims in 13 states. Specifically,
As of April 22, 2008, state and city health departments from 12 states have identified 21 ill persons infected with same genetic fingerprint of Salmonella Agona. Ill persons with the outbreak strain have been identified from Colorado (1), Delaware (1), Maine (3), Massachusetts (2), Minnesota (1), North Dakota (1), New Hampshire (2), New Jersey (4), New York (3), Pennsylvania (1), Rhode Island (1), and Vermont (1). Onset dates, which are known for 13 patients, ranged from January 22 to March 8, 2008. Patients’ ages ranged from 4 months to 95 years with a median age of 66 years. Five hospitalizations and no deaths have been reported.
There is a bit of a discrepancy between the CDC tally and an April 14th report from FDA. In its report, FDA cited 23 illnesses in 14 states. Perhaps two of those suspected illnesses turned out to be due to another microbe or from a different source.

The good news is that this outbreak appears to be contained. No new cases have been reported in the last two weeks. The bad news, for Malt-O-Meal, is that the lawsuits are only just beginning.

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