Foody World turns into Listeria World

A Richmond BC (that’s in Canada) grocery store has been linked to six cases of listeriosis resulting hospitalizations. Health authorities are, according to Global News, unsure of the source.

Vancouver Coastal Health says customers should not consume any produce or ready-to-eat foods made at Foody World.foody-world

The health authority says at least six people have been hospitalized with signs of infection due to Listeria.

Customers are urged to throw out any food that may have been contaminated including ready-to-eat meat products, sushi, produce and baked goods purchased from the store since July.

Health inspectors have closed the store and kitchen and say the store will be reopened once all health and safety standards are met.

Norovirus hospitalizes thousands of Canadians annually

Most people get over a bout of norovirus relatively quickly and without a visit to a health care provider. In extreme cases, a couple of days worth of vomit and painful stomach cramps can send folks to the hospital, especially if they become severely dehydrated.

Our hoser colleagues have estimated that between 4000 and 11,000 people are hospitalized as a result of Norovirus annually in Canada, resulting in a cost burden of over $21 million CAD (or about 5 million Timbits).images

Estimated hospitalizations attributed to norovirus and rotavirus infection in Canada, 2006–2010
V.K. Morton, M.K. Thomas and S. A McEwen
Epidemiology and Infection / Volume 143 / Issue 16 / December 2015, pp 3528-3537

Enteric viruses including norovirus and rotavirus are leading causes of gastroenteritis in Canada. However, only a small number of clinical cases are actually tested for these pathogens leading to systematic underestimation of attributed hospitalizations in administrative databases. The objective of this analysis was to estimate the number of hospitalizations due to norovirus and rotavirus in Canada. Hospitalization records for acute gastroenteritis-associated discharges at all acute-care hospitals in Canada between 2006 and 2011 were analysed. Cause-unspecified gastroenteritis hospitalizations were modelled using age-specific negative binomial models with cause-specified gastroenteritis admissions as predictors. The coefficients from the models were used to estimate the number of norovirus and rotavirus admissions. The total annual hospitalizations for rotavirus were estimated to be between 4500 and 10 000. Total annual hospitalizations for norovirus were estimated to be between 4000 and 11 000. The mean total annual cost associated with these hospitalizations was estimated to be at least $16 million for rotavirus and $21 million for norovirus (all figures in Canadian dollars). This study is the first comprehensive analysis of norovirus and rotavirus hospitalizations in Canada. These estimates provide a more complete assessment of the burden and economic costs of these pathogens to the Canadian healthcare system.

Happy New Year: lots of norovirus in Seoul, South Korea

Norovirus isn’t just a North American concern – although surveillance and reporting elsewhere is sorta loose. In Jan. 2014 over 1000 Japanese kids were ill from prepared school meals with contamination eventually linked to bakery employees and bread.

According to Korea JoongAng Daily, 70 cases of norovirus required hospitalization at Severance Hospital in Seodaemun District, northwestern Seoul on New Years Eve.D0NA88_2426320b

Kim Mi-jin is the mother of a 7-year-old daughter and the 4-year-old son. But unlike most people, she spent New Year’s Day in the emergency room, while her son struggled with a high fever that had climbed beyond 39 degrees Celsius (102.2 degrees Fahrenheit) on the previous night.

“He was diagnosed with enteritis, caused by the norovirus,” she said. “I’m worried about my daughter because she’s also showing symptoms similar to my son: vomiting and high fever.”

Despite the bitterly cold weather in Seoul – it was minus 10 degrees Celsius on New Year’s Day – winter enteritis is in full swing, which has led a number of patients to the hospital.

According to statistics from Severance Hospital in Seodaemun District, northwestern Seoul, 70 patients rushed to the emergency room on New Year’s Eve, all exhibiting symptoms of enteritis, more commonly known as inflammation of the small intestine.

Among them were 20 adults and 50 children.

“Most of the patients were children or those in their 20s or 30s,” a hospital official overseeing the night shift said on Dec. 31.