As of September 21, 2021, 284 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Oranienburg have been reported from 29 states. Illnesses started on dates ranging from August 3, 2021 to September 13, 2021.
Sick people range in age from less than 1 year to 89 years, with a median age of 35, and 59% are female. Of 86 people with information available, 26 have been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported.
The true number of sick people in an outbreak is likely much higher than the number reported, and the outbreak may not be limited to the states with known illnesses. This is because many people recover without medical care and are not tested for Salmonella. In addition, recent illnesses may not yet be reported as it usually takes 3 to 4 weeks to determine if a sick person is part of an outbreak.
State and local public health officials are interviewing people about the foods they ate in the week before they got sick. CDC is analyzing the data and has not identified a specific food item as a potential source of this outbreak. Several groups of people (“subclusters”) at restaurants in multiple states have been identified. These subclusters are groups of people who do not know one another who ate at the same restaurant and got sick. Investigating these subclusters can sometimes help identify a food item eaten by all of the sick people that could be the source of the outbreak.
However, The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) shows that of the 275 Salmonella Oranienburg uploaded, 274 Whole Genome Sequence (WGS) “matches” are human and one is cilantro – so, what’s up public health?