SA: Listeria victims death toll at rise

The death toll from an outbreak of listeria in South Africa has jumped beyond 60 in the past month, health authorities said, adding they had closed a poultry abattoir where the bug that causes the disease had been detected.

Since monitoring of the outbreak began last January, 720 laboratory-confirmed cases of food poisoning due to the disease, also known as listeriosis, have been reported, the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) said.

That was up from 557 in December, since when recorded deaths had risen to 61 from 36.

A food microbiologist said the “alarming” outbreak appeared to be the biggest ever recorded and could spread further if it was not tackled urgently.

 

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