E. Coli Lawyer Ron Simon: “The Key to the source is Georgia’s 27 E. coli victims. E. Coli numbers have been rising in Georgia as more and more victims are identified in the E. coli Raw Beef Outbreak. It is likley that Georgia will be the first to identify the source.”
Georgia has become one of the hardest hit states in the multi-state e. coli outbreak that has sickened over 100 people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to investigate the outbreak but has determined that the probable source of the e. coli infections is ground beef. No specific brand or producer of the contaminated ground beef has yet been pinpointed.
There are now 27 reports of illnesses in Georgia related to e. coli in ground beef, with 3 Georgians being hospitalized for their symptoms. Kentucky has the highest number of illnesses, with 54, and Tennessee is reporting 28 illnesses linked to e. coli in ground beef.
The outbreak began in March 2019 and has expanded to include six bordering states: Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, Ohio, and Indiana. The CDC has found, through its interviews with those who have become ill, that consumers who became sick during the outbreak ate ground beef at home and in restaurants. Investigators are still trying to determine the source of the ground beef supplied to those grocery stores and restaurant locations connected to the people who became ill.
The CDC also anticipates that the number of illnesses will increase. It typically takes about two or three weeks between the time an infected consumer seeks medical attention and the time the case is reported to health officials.
Even with the multiple illnesses across six states, the CDC is not recommending that consumers avoid eating ground beef at this time. Nor is the agency recommending that retailers stop serving or selling ground beef. Consumers and food preparers in restaurants are advised to handle ground beef safely and to cook it thoroughly to avoid foodborne illness.