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For Release: September 11, 2008
Contact: Leslea Bennett-Webb
Office of Communications

Situation Update No. 14
Outbreak of Severe Diarrheal Illness in Northeastern Oklahoma

The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) said today its investigation of the E. coli 0111 outbreak in northeastern Oklahoma has now confirmed at least 248 persons have become ill. Of that number, 202 were adults and 46 were children. One person has died.

At least 64 persons have been hospitalized including 16 who have received dialysis treatment. Of that number, nine were children and seven were adults.

The OSDH cautions that the number of reported cases and hospitalizations associated with the outbreak are likely to change as the investigation continues.

The OSDH also announced today that laboratory analysis of food samples taken from the restaurant found no disease-causing pathogens.

“Our investigation will continue to focus on interviews with persons who ate at the Country Cottage restaurant, particularly during the weekend of Aug. 15-17, when most persons who have reported becoming ill ate at the restaurant,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Kristy Bradley.

More than 1,500 persons have been interviewed thus far, including 181 persons yesterday. The OSDH will continue to interview through Friday persons who ate at the restaurant Aug. 15-17. In particular, the OSDH wants to talk with families with young children who ate at the restaurant and did not become ill. Persons can call the OSDH at 1-800-990-2769 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. each day through this Friday, Sept. 12.

Where available in northeastern Oklahoma, the public may call 2-1-1 for more information about the outbreak. Additional information is also on the Oklahoma State Department of Health’s Web site at www.health.ok.gov. Click on “Current Features – Severe Diarrheal Illness Outbreak.”

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