Unusual food poisoning outbreak in New Zealand

An outbreak of food poisoning involving an unusual bacterium called Yersinia pseudotuberculosis has been reported in New Zealand. A total of 101 confirmed cases and 41 suspected cases have been registered nationwide with 38 people hospitalized since mid-August. Most of the cases have occurred in Christchurch, Wellington, and Auckland. While the exact cause is still under investigation, there may be links to fresh vegetables (carrots and lettuce) and fruit.

This bacteria causes stomach pain and can mimic appendicitis. Authorities are reminding the public to take extra care with personal hygiene when preparing and consuming food and washing any raw fruit and vegetables thoroughly.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Food and Water Contamination.

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