Links in new E. coli outbreak unclear
Eleven cases connected to single Niagara restaurant, but officials concrned about source of four other incidents
October 28, 2008
Source of Article: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20081028.ECOLI28/TPStory/National
The 15 reported cases stem from the Niagara-on-the-Lake area. Five cases are lab-confirmed and three more strongly suspected, said Dr. Doug Sider, the associate medical officer of health in Niagara Region. The other seven cases are being tested. The first illnesses showed up late Friday.
"At this point in time, things are fairly actively expanding," Dr. Sider said. "As is quite often the case early on in these outbreaks, we're more in the investigative, detective mode rather than being able to come to conclusions."
Eleven of the people had eaten recently at the Little Red Rooster restaurant in Niagara-on-the-Lake. It's the remaining four, who hadn't eaten there, who are of special concern to Dr. Sider.
"Is there something broader going on? That is what I think we're more concerned about," he said.
The owners of the Little Red Rooster voluntarily closed it Friday and say they're co-operating with the investigation. It will remain closed until Dr. Sider's office instructs them otherwise, co-owner Mary Lynn Pullman said yesterday.
the illnesses required people be admitted to a hospital, including one in
outbreak comes on the heels of a similar one connected to a
that outbreak, which was first noted on Oct. 11, 217 illnesses have now been
reported. All but two are in
of those cases have been fatal. The most serious, a young girl who was taken
nothing so far to indicate
think it's too early for the molecular fingerprinting to say whether it's the
same [sub] strain that was involved in
Dr. Sider said there are now slight delays in receiving test results from the provincial lab that analyzes E. coli samples, given the scope of the concurrent outbreaks.
must swamp the system," added Brett Finlay, a
"It takes a lot of detective work to sort it all out. It's much more difficult than it should seem on the surface."
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