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Salmonella outbreak affecting Ga., Minn., Ohio

/ Source: The Associated Press

Georgia, Ohio and Minnesota are among the states that are part of a national salmonella outbreak that has sent at least a dozen people to the hospital and sickened nearly 400 people, officials said Thursday.

Forty-two states have reported illnesses from the same type of salmonella bacteria, totaling at least 388 nationwide, federal health officials said this week. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is leading the investigation but has not yet released the list of states or determined which foods were may have caused people to become sick.

But Georgia health officials said Thursday they've identified cases in five people who became ill from mid-October to mid-December. No one died, but at least one person was hospitalized.

In Ohio, 51 people in 20 counties had the same type of salmonella, which happened about the same time as the Georgia cases, health officials said. At least a dozen were hospitalized.

California officials say they had 51 cases as of last week, and a Minnesota official on Thursday said that state has had 30 cases.

Officials say steps to protect against the illness include careful handling and preparation of raw meat, and frequent hand washing.

CDC officials say the cases in the outbreak have all been genetically fingerprinted as the Typhimurium type, which is among the most common forms of salmonella food poisoning.