An E. coli scare has prompted health authorities to shut down Heart Centered Montessori, a preschool in West Linn, Oregon, after three children were sickened (and two hospitalized) by the disease-causing bacteria. A notification was sent to parents over the weekend to have the students stay home while the cause of the outbreak is determined by health officials, according to Food Safety News.
“We urge parents to continue to be vigilant over the next few weeks and report any illness symptoms promptly,” wrote the Clackamas County Public Health Division in a letter to parents of the students who range in age from infants to six-year-olds. “Please also seek medical attention if any symptoms appear.”
E. coli bacteria are found in our small intestines, and only one type, O157:H7, can cause harm to the body (two of the three students tested positive for this type). E. coli bacterial infections are most commonly contracted from undercooked meat or contaminated dairy or produce, and cause possibly fatal diarrheal symptoms.
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Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @JoannaFantozzi