FDA Announces Recall of Ricotta Salata Frescolina Brand for Possible Health Risk

 Baltimore, MD (September 11, 2012) -- The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) and local health departments are working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and public health officials in several other states to investigate a multi-state outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections.  There have been no deaths, although the three Maryland cases currently identified with this outbreak have been hospitalized. 

 

In response to this ongoing investigation, Forever Cheese has issued a voluntary recall of Ricotta Salata Frescolina brand from one specific production date, Forever Cheese lot # T9425 and/or production code 441202.  The FDA announcement about the voluntary recall may be found at:  http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm318844.htm


Products were sold to wholesale distributors for retailers and restaurants in Maryland between June 20 and August 9, 2012.  Further investigation about the specific distribution of this cheese is ongoing. 


Listeriosis is a serious infection caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes. A person with listeriosis usually has fever and muscle aches, often preceded by diarrhea or other gastrointestinal symptoms within 3 days to 10 weeks (usually within 3 weeks). Sometimes the blood or other body sites become infected.  Pregnant women who become infected generally only develop flu-like symptoms (fever, tiredness, achiness). However, the infection can cause premature labor, premature delivery, miscarriage, or stillbirth.  Listeriosis can be treated with antibiotics.


Persons at higher risk for disease include:

  • Pregnant women

  • Newborns

  • Elderly persons

  • Individuals with a weakened immune system (for example: persons with AIDS, cancer, diabetes, or kidney disease)

If a person has an illness consistent with listeriosis, they should see their healthcare provider.


DHMH is currently advising consumers to:

 

  • Not consume any Forever Cheese Ricotta Salata Frescolina Brand cheese or foods that have been made with this cheese

  • Discard any remaining cheese and those food items made with this cheese 

  • Thoroughly clean and disinfect any surfaces that may have come in contact with this cheese prior to further use (example: cutting boards, knives, plates, etc.)

  • If they have purchased recalled product, contact the store where they purchased the cheese for a refund


In addition, while the recalled product is made from pasteurized sheep’s milk, the Department reminds Marylanders who are at higher risk for disease to avoid soft cheeses and products made from raw or unpasteurized milk.

 

Over the last 5 years, Maryland had an average of 15 listeriosis cases reported each year. Last year, there were 19 confirmed listeriosis cases reported in Maryland. More information on listeriosis can be found at: http://ideha.dhmh.maryland.gov/SitePages/Listeriosis.aspx

 

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WCHD News

 

(Snow Hill, MD)- The 22nd Annual “Tortoise & Hare Dare” 5K walk/run will be held at 9 am, on Saturday, April 6, with a rain date of April 13, at Pocomoke River State Park-Shad Landing, Snow Hill, Maryland. Registration begins at 8:30 am. This is a FREE event and is Pet-Friendly and will be led by Smokey the Bear. The first 100 runners/walkers to check-in on the day of the event will receive a free commemorative T-shirt. There is no cost to take part in the Tortoise and the Hare Dare. The Worcester County Health Department, Worcester County Department of Recreation & Parks, and Pocomoke River State Park all co-sponsor the 5k.

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(Snow Hill, MD)- The Worcester County Health Department is pleased to announce new funding awarded through the Maryland Department of Health, Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, to put into action community-based projects that support physical activity in Worcester County. This new grant funding will help WCHD create projects that line up with the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Healthy People 2020 campaign.

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Worcester County Lead Poisoning Prevention Program provides consultation to parents, home owners, renters, landlords, medical offices, and other concerned community members on the lead poisoning, prevention, testing, and regulations. Education and case management is provide to parents with children with elevated blood lead levels. Call 410-632-1100 for more information. 


What is lead poisoning?

Lead poisoning is one of the most common environmental child health problems in the United States and effects 3 to 4 million children. Lead is especially harmful to children younger than 6, but anyone who eats, drinks, or breathes something which has too much lead can get lead poisoning. Although chipping paint and paint dust are the most common sources of lead, lead can also be found in ceramic cups and dishes, fishing sinkers, craft supplies, leaded crystal, spray paint, and even in soil and water.

Click the image below for more information.

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Flu season is fully underway but it's not too late to reduce your risk. Flu vaccines are still available in Worcester County and simple, everyday precautions such as washing your hands, staying home when you're sick, and covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze can help stop the spread of the flu. To learn more call 410-632-1100 or click the image below to visit the CDC page on flu prevention. 

 

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Snow Hill Rotary partners with Worcester Health on prescription lockboxes; Health Department to launch new substance abuse awareness campaigns in Spring 2019


(Snow Hill, MD)- The Worcester County Health Department and Snow Hill Rotary Club partnered in 2019 to provide free prescription lockboxes to the community. In 2018, the Rotary conducted a needs assessment to determine priorities for where to donate their resources. After having presentations from various organizations, including the Worcester County Health Department, it was determined that the opioid crisis would be a priority area and partnering with the health department to provide lock boxes was the intervention they selected. The Snow Hill Rotary Club also participated in a Naloxone training provided by the health department.

Funded by the Rotary Club, the new lockboxes encourage residents to keep their prescription medications, such as opioids, safe and secure. In addition to promoting responsible opioid storage, Worcester Health will launch several new awareness campaigns this spring focusing on Addiction in the Workplace, Naloxone training, reducing the stigma around recovery as well as promoting the State of Maryland’s Good Samaritan Law.

“I would like to thank the Snow Hill Rotary Club for partnering with the Worcester County Health Department on the lockbox initiative,” said Rebecca Jones, Health Officer for Worcester County. “This is another avenue in which to fight the ongoing opioid crisis.”

 Pictured (left to right): Mimi Dean, Director of Prevention, Worcester County Health Department, Rebecca Jones, Health Officer, Worcester County Health Department, Marty Pusey, Snow Hill Rotary Club, Chris Welch, President, Snow Hill Rotary Club.

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