Canberra is crushing salmonellosis in early 2017

Canberra is crushing salmonellosis in early 2017

00:00 / 00:03:37

Crushing salmonellosis is probably not a great headline for the National Capital

Crushing salmonellosis is nothing for Canberra to be proud of but I was surprised when I looked at the figures today for salmonellosis notifications per 100,000 population by state and territory in Australia.

Salmonellosis rates in Australia PER 100,000 for each state and territory Gary Lum crushing salmonellosis
Salmonellosis rates in Australia PER 100,000 for each state and territory (Friday 2017-03-10)

National notifiable diseases surveillance system

You can find the information on the website for the national notifiable diseases surveillance system. Anyone can access the information, you can search by disease by year or jurisdiction and by numbers or rate per 100,000 population.

Is infection by Salmonella a big deal?

Most people who get infected have some sort of gastroenteritis, mainly diarrhoea with lower abdominal pain and sometimes fever. You certainly don’t feel well but most people will recover without treatment. That’s an important point, most people should NOT be treated, I repeat, should NOT be treated. In reasonably healthy adults, treatment with antimicrobials can prolong the carriage of Salmonella in your gut. It’s not the thing you want to have in your guts for a prolonged time.

There are also some risk groups, namely, people who are immunosuppressed, and people at the extremes of ages, especially infants. In these groups, treatment with antimicrobials is advised. In these susceptible groups, invasive disease including meningitis, bacteræmia and septicæmia can occur with death a distinct possibility.

Therefore, Salmonella infection is a big deal for public health officials. It’s why, such a big deal is made of food safety and hygiene in restaurants and places where food is eaten, especially outdoor events when controlled environmental conditions cannot be guaranteed. Anyone with a permit to sell food must take scrupulous care when preparing food and cook it properly.

Final words

Canberra has recently had some well-reported outbreaks of salmonellosis. The reporting is mandatory and it indicates for Canberra this has been a big deal.

A tweep started an exchange with me about this and I don’t think he appreciated the magnitude of the numbers.


The take home message is being careful with food preparation.

Subscribe to my mailing list and get an e-mail each time a post is released

* indicates required

Email Format

Powered by MailChimp

3 Replies to “Canberra is crushing salmonellosis in early 2017”

  1. I haven’t been infected with Salmonella, but with Campolybactor, which forced me to stay in hospital for a while. I got this from a cold sauce with eggs at a festival and I was marked by this for the next 2 years in health.

    1. Campylobacter infection can be quite severe and is associated with Guillain-Barre syndrome. It’s good you recovered from it.

Go on, leave a comment, you know you want to