The Cumberland County Department of Public Health is investigating a possible salmonella outbreak at the Holiday Inn Bordeaux.
Wednesday the health department updated the number of people identified with symptoms consistent with salmonella. 18 people had been identified with symptoms - two more than the previous day. Now four people are hospitalized with symptoms the department said. On Monday two cases of salmonella were confirmed and one person was hospitalized.
Health officials say all of the individuals ate at the Holiday Inn Bordeaux, which has two restaurants, the All American Sports Bar and Grill and The Café Bordeaux. The hotel also has a banquet kitchen.
Based on its investigation, the health department is now asking that individuals who consumed food or beverages at the Holiday Inn Bordeaux since May 1 and have developed symptoms within three days of that visit to call the department at 910-433-3638.
"We are actively working with the hotel and restaurant management and with state officials to resolve this as soon as possible," said Cumberland County Health Department Director Buck Wilson.
The health department has also set up a "Salmonella Hotline" at 910-433-3824. In addition, Cape Fear Valley Health System has a Care Link health education line staffed by registered nurses. The health department said anyone can call 615-LINK (5465) with questions about Salmonella infection.
"We want people to call the health department even if they have recovered so we can ask them questions in hopes of identifying the source of the contamination. We have questions about food sources and travel," Wilson said.
Wilson said the restaurants are inspected quarterly - the most often inspections the health department does. He said the most recent inspection score was 91.5.
Wilson said pinpointing salmonella is usually rare. The restaurants remain open while investigators try to figure out what caused the salmonella.
"The best time to investigate is when they're functional so you can check equipment and make sure it's working properly, make sure the employees are doing what they need to do," Wilson explained
Brandon is a North Carolina native and UNC alum who lives in Fayetteville, and covers Cumberland County and the Sandhills. Returning to North Carolina to work as a journalist is a dream come true for Brandon.More>>