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AHS investigating a summer surge of E. Coli cases in Alberta

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Alberta Health Services is seeing an unusually high number of E. Coli infections in the province this summer.

There have been 130 cases crop up across the province in the last 6 weeks, as opposed to the 96 cases treated in all of 2013.

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Albert de Villiers says they haven’t yet been able to narrow down one specific reason or cause for the outbreak.

“Sometimes in outbreaks like this we can narrow it down and pin it on something like eggs that a restaurant had, or a food handler with some disease, or they imported some lettuce that was contaminated. However, this one specifically, we haven’t been able to pin it down at all.”

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de Villiers says of the 8 cases here in the North Zone, 3 have been serious enough for hospitalization.

There are some things you can do to reduce your risk of infection, such as washing your hands often with hot soapy water, especially when preparing food, making sure beef is cooked to at least 71 degrees, and wash all fruits and vegetables before eating.

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