The investigation continues into the source of the E-coli outbreak across central Illinois. What is known so far is that there’s 53 cases reported, 31 hospitalizations, at least 16 states affected and, fortunately, zero deaths.
What isn’t known is what specifically happened in the Yuma, Ariz., growing region that led to the contamination of chopped romaine lettuce, as well as hearts and heads of the leafy green, with an especially dangerous strain of E. coli bacteria, which led to a case of infection in an undisclosed part of central Illinois.
Public health officials are taking a wait-and-see approach as to what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention uncovers in its investigation, which has already uncovered a case of illness in central Illinois.
The Illinois Department of Public Health is currently collecting information with the CDC, and is advising Illinois consumers who have store-bought romaine lettuce at home should not eat it and should throw it away. The IDPH also recommends confirming with retailers that romaine lettuce products for sale have not come from the Yuma, Ariz., growing region.