25 salmonella cases reported in Rutherford

Sep. 20, 2013 @ 05:29 AM

The number of reported cases of salmonella in Rutherford and Cleveland counties have increased.

A total of 54 cases of illness have been reported as of Thursday; 25 cases from Rutherford and 29 cases from Cleveland County, after a barbecue fundraiser at Sandy Plains Baptist Church on Sept. 7 in Cleveland County

Of the 54 cases, 11 have been confirmed and 43 are probable.

A total of 10 people have been hospitalized; six from Cleveland and four from Rutherford.

One person from Cleveland County is still in the hospital, reported DeShay D. Oliver, coordinator of health services at Cleveland County Health Department.

Among Rutherford County residents who contracted salmonella was Madge Bradley of Sunshine. 

Her daughter and son-in-law, David and Kay Brooks of Bostic, went with Bradley to the barbecue and said they all ate the same food. The Brooks couple did not get sick, Kay said.

"They fed thousands there," David Brooks said of the fundraising event.

Bradley was taken to the Rutherford Regional hospital's emergency room where she received intravenous fluids last Wednesday and was released that same evening.

But her condition continued to worsen, David Brooks said, and she was taken to Cleveland Regional Medical Center where she was admitted for the weekend.

"She's doing much better today," Kay said Thursday afternoon. 

The Rutherford County and Cleveland County public health departments are collaborating with the North Carolina  Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health in the investigation.

Helen White, nursing director at Rutherford County Health Department, said anyone who attended the event and became ill with intestinal symptoms such as diarrhea or vomiting, should consult a doctor or the health department immediately.

She also asks those who may have gone to the barbecue and didn't get sick to call the health department.

Call the Rutherford County Health Department at (828) 287-6100 for other information.