By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

In a follow-up on the multistate outbreaks of Salmonella infections in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have reported an additional 311 illnesses. This brings the total to 474 sick people from 46 states have been reported. One-third of sick people are young children under 5 years.

In addition, 103 people were hospitalized. One death has been reported from Indiana.

State and local public health officials are interviewing people about the animals they came into contact with the week before they got sick. Of the 271 people interviewed, 209 (77%) reported contact with backyard poultry before getting sick.

CDC reminds the public that backyard poultry can carry Salmonella bacteria even if they look healthy and clean.

Steps to stay healthy around backyard poultry:

  • Always wash your hands for 20 seconds after touching the flock or flock supplies.
  • Keep flock and flock supplies outside the house to prevent spreading germs into your house.
  • Don’t let children younger than 5 years touch the birds (including chicks and ducklings) or anything in the area where the birds live and roam.
  • Don’t kiss or snuggle the birds, as this can spread germs to your mouth and make you sick. 

About Salmonella:

  • Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps 6 hours to 6 days after being exposed to the bacteria.
  • The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people recover without treatment.
  • In some people, the illness may be so severe that the patient is hospitalized.
  • Children younger than 5, adults 65 and older, and people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have severe illness.