SPRINGFIELD, Ohio (WDTN) – According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, three more people have gotten sick after eating packaged salad from the Dole plant in Springfield.
This brings the total number of people affected to eighteen. Two of the new cases are in Ohio.
It’s possible the number may continue to rise, according to Dr. Ginger Cameron, an epidemiologist at Cedarville University.
“The thing about listeria is that it has a really long incubation period,” said Dr. Cameron.
Incubation period meaning, from the time you ate the contaminated salad until you got sick.
“It can be anywhere from three days to seventy days. The last documented case that we had before this was January 31st. We’re not outside that 70 day window yet,” Dr. Cameron said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, three more people have gotten sick. One from Missouri, the two others from Ohio.
Aches, pains and a fever are symptoms the flu and listeria have in common according to Dr. Cameron, but one symptom will help you to know the difference between a virus and food poisoning.
“The thing I always tell people to remember is the flu is actually respiratory. So you’re going to start to cough. If you don’t start to cough, it’s not the flu. You have something else going on and listeria is a real possibility,” Dr. Cameron said.
If you come down with listeria-like symptoms, it’s best to seek medical attention immediately.
“The longer you’re sick with it, it has more opportunity. It’s a bacterial infection so the longer you’re sick the more opportunity it has to develop into something more serious,” said Dr. Cameron.
The Dole facility in Springfield has yet to start production since stopping due to the outbreak in late January.
According to Clark county commissioner John Detrick, the company is taking steps to prevent another listeria outbreak but he does not know when production will start again.