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Nov 18, 2008

Woohoo! Free Hamburgers! With Bacteria

11/18/08 - WhiteCoatRants   --> Source

[edited] The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says the superbug bacterium Clostridium difficile should be so uncommon that it won’t pay for the costs of treating any disease associated with it. [They say it is introduced by bad hospital practices.]

Well if you live in Arizona right now and are eating a hamburger, chances are about 50/50 that you are chewing on some C.difficile right now. An article in MSNBC reports that more than 40 percent of packaged meats in three Arizona chain stores tested positive. It was in every type of meat tested, including uncooked ground beef, pork and turkey; pork sausage and chorizo; and ready-to-eat products including beef summer sausage and pork braunschweiger.

Specialists from the CDC said the connection between the presence of C.difficile bacteria and infection has not been established, with not enough evidence about food transmission to warrant public alarm.

Not enough evidence? Are they serious? C. difficile is spread by the fecal-oral route. C.difficile has to make it out of one host’s colon and into another host’s mouth in order to cause an infection. Meat already has the C.difficile contamination out of one host’s colon. Consumers are putting the meat into their mouths to “savor its flavor.” I’m not a specialist from the CDC, nor do I study C. difficile, but is there something I am missing here?

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