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Health Officials Blame Potato Salad For Botulism Outbreak

Crosse Point Free Will Baptist Church
Mandie Trimble
Officals blame home-made potato salad for a botulism outbreak at a Lancaster church.

Public health officials say potato salad made with home-canned potatoes likely sickened 21 people who attended a church potluck in Lancaster earlier this month. 

Officials base their determination on laboratory tests and interviews with those who attended the potluck at Cross Pointe Free Will Baptist Church on April 19th. 

The outbreak killed a 54-year-old woman and infected 20 others.  Officials say ten people exhibit symptoms consistent with botulism, 12 remain hospitalized.

Doctors have treated the patients with antitoxin provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“This is a difficult time for our community, and our thoughts and prayers are with the affected individuals and their families,” said Mark Aebi, Fairfield County Health Director in a statement.  

Mike Thompson spends much of his time correcting people who mispronounce the name of his hometown – Worcester, Massachusetts. Mike studied broadcast journalism at Syracuse University when he was not running in circles – as a distance runner on the SU track team.