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CDC investigates multidrug-resistant salmonella infections linked to raw chicken

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as other groups in many states, are investigating an outbreak of a multidrug-resistant salmonella infections.This has been linked to raw chicken products.

Ninety-two people have been infected with salmonella in 29 states, including Ohio.

Twenty-one people have been hospitalized but no deaths have been reported.

There have been seven cases reported in Ohio.

On the Ohio State University's campus, experts provided ABC6/FOX28 with some safety tips as the outbreak is investigated.

"It means it would be resistant to multiple different drugs that would typically be used to kill salmonella," said Barbara Kowalcyk PHD, an Ohio State University Assistant Professor in the Department of Food Science and Technology.

The advice is to cook chicken to the right temperature, that's 165°, wash your hands thoroughly and avoid cross-contamination when cooking.

"If you've used a utensil with a raw product, and then you go to flip it, use a new clean utensil," she said.

She also said cross contamination with raw meat isn't just an issue at home.

Think at the grocery store, where she said the outside of meat packages can be contaminated too.

"What I do is I grab one of the bags they usually have one, and I turn it out over my hand and use it like a glove to pick up the package of meat," she said, "I pull the bag over the meet, knot it off and I don't open it again until I am ready to cook."

Columbus Public Health provided safety tips as well.

"Washing the chicken or washing the turkey anymore, they don't recommend that because the splatter gets all over the place, and it can contaminate the faucets, it can contaminate the countertop," said Robert Acquista, RS, the Food Protection Program Supervisor for Columbus Public Health.

He said safety like this shouldn't just be on people’s minds because there is an outbreak."If you prevent cross-contamination, you cook to the proper temperature, and you wash your hands, you should be OK," he said.

The CDC said the outbreak at this point hasn't been linked to any single, common supplier of raw chicken products or live chickens.

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