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Health Indicator Report of Foodborne Illness - Salmonella Infections

Salmonellosis is an infectious disease caused by ''Salmonella'' bacteria. Most persons infected with ''Salmonella'' develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12-72 hours after exposure. The illness usually lasts 4-7 days and most persons recover without treatment. In some patients, the ''Salmonella'' infection may spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and can lead to hospitalization or death unless the person is treated promptly. The elderly, infants, and those with impaired immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness. The infection is acquired by eating or drinking food contaminated with ''Salmonella'' bacteria. Illness may also be spread by direct contact with an infected person or animal. ''Salmonella'' bacteria are commonly found in food products such as eggs, egg products, meats, poultry, unpasteurized dairy products, and contaminated produce. Domestic animals including poultry (especially baby ducks and chicks), reptiles (e.g., lizards and snakes), amphibians (especially turtles), and farm animals (e.g., cattle and pigs) may carry the bacteria.

Rate of Reported Confirmed and Probable Salmonella Cases in Utah by Local Health District, 2021

Rate of Reported Confirmed and Probable Salmonella Cases in Utah by Local Health District, 2021


The CSTE case definition counts both confirmed and probable cases of ''Salmonella''.

Data Sources

  • The Utah Department of Health and Human Services Bureau of Epidemiology
  • Population Estimates: National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) through a collaborative agreement with the U.S. Census Bureau, IBIS Version 2020
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)


Number of reported culture-confirmed and probable cases of ''Salmonella'' infections per 100,000 population per year.


Number of reported culture-confirmed and probable cases of salmonellosis per year.


Total Utah population per year.

Healthy People Objective FS-1.4:

Reduce infections caused by ''Salmonella'' species transmitted commonly through food
U.S. Target: 11.4 cases per 100,000
State Target: 11.4 cases per 100,000

Other Objectives

Other Healthy People 2020 Objectives related to salmonellosis: * FS-2: Reduce the number of outbreak-associated infections due to Shiga toxin-producing ''E. coli'' O157, or ''Campylobacter'', ''Listeria'', or ''Salmonella'' species associated with food commodity groups (beef, dairy, fruits and nuts, leafy vegetables, and poultry) * FS-3: Prevent an increase in the proportion of non-typhoidal ''Salmonella'' and ''Campylobacter jejuni'' isolates from humans that are resistant to antimicrobial drugs * FS-5: Increase the proportion of consumers who follow key food safety practices * FS-6: Increase the proportion of fast-food and full service restaurants that follow food safety practices that prevent foodborne illness outbreaks [[br]] Utah's 42 Community Health Indicators include: * Reduce outbreaks of infections caused by key foodborne bacteria.

How Are We Doing?

The number of reported ''Salmonella'' infections in Utah decreased from 27.8 cases per 100,000 person-years in 1999 to 10.0 per 100,000 person-years in 2021. The Healthy People 2020 target is 11.4 cases per 100,000 person-years. The 5-year average for ''Salmonella'' infections for 2016-2020 in Utah is 11.0 cases per 100,000 person-years, just under the Healthy People 2020 goal. A portion of the decrease in the number of salmonellosis cases reported in Utah since 1999 may be attributed to efforts of the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food through their Egg and Poultry Grading service. The mission of this service is to assure Utah consumers safe, wholesome, quality eggs, egg products, and poultry. Recent national investigations have identified outbreaks of ''Salmonella'' linked to contaminated tomatoes eaten raw (2004 and 2008), cantaloupe (2000-2002), raw almonds (2003-2004), ground beef (2004), pet rodents (2004), dry dog food (2006-2007), peanut butter (2008), African Dwarf Frogs (2009), alfalfa sprouts (2010), queso fresco (2011), cucumbers (2015), raw milk (2016), hedgehogs (2019), raw onions (2020-2021), bearded dragons (2021), and live poultry (2017-2021).

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

The average rate of reported salmonellosis cases in Utah during the 1995-2001 time period was higher than the U.S. average. However, during the 2002-2018 time period, Utah's average rate (11.7 cases per 100,000 person-years) has been lower than the U.S. average rate (16.4 cases per 100,000 person-years) for the same time period. The average for 2019 in Utah was also lower than the U.S. average rate (10.1 cases per 100,000 person-years in Utah vs. 17.8 U.S. cases per 100,000 person-years). There are no finalized national reports past 2019.

What Is Being Done?

From 1994 to 2000, ''Salmonella'' Enteritidis (SE) was found in approximately 55% of all ''Salmonella'' infections. This was primarily due to several outbreaks associated with eating raw or undercooked eggs. However, since 2000, there has only been one outbreak of salmonellosis associated with eggs in Utah. This has resulted in a decrease in the number of ''Salmonella'' infections overall and a decrease in the proportion of ''Salmonella'' infections that are due to SE. The improvement in decreasing ''Salmonella'' rates may be directly linked to the Utah Egg Quality Assurance Program (UEQAP) described in the "How Are We Doing?" section. Additionally, improvements in laboratory and epidemiologic techniques, as well as improved communication between state and local jurisdictions, has resulted in improved outbreak detection, especially for outbreaks due to uncommon sources of ''Salmonella''. Per the Communicable Disease Rule R386-702-3, health care providers and laboratories are required to report salmonellosis cases to the Bureau of Epidemiology or a local health department. The Bureau of Epidemiology assists local health departments with the investigation of cases and outbreaks and implementation of control measures to prevent further cases. Local health departments make an attempt to interview every case of salmonellosis reported to public health. Information gathered during these interviews includes food history, water exposure, animal exposure, travel history, and contact with ill individuals. Data from these interviews are analyzed and used to identify outbreaks and common sources of infection. Some general guidelines to prevent the spread of ''Salmonella'' include the following: *Always refrigerate meat, cook meats completely, and never eat raw meat. *Always refrigerate eggs and cook eggs and food containing raw eggs completely. Never eat dough, batter, sauces, ice cream, or other foods that contain raw eggs. *Use only pasteurized milk and juices. *Carefully wash hands before and after preparing food, after using the toilet, changing diapers, or touching animals. [[br]] Visit [] for good hand washing techniques.

Available Services

Foodborne disease outbreaks and other outbreaks are investigated primarily by local health departments in collaboration with Utah Department of Health as needed. For more information regarding local health departments in Utah, visit: []. To report a foodborne illness, please visit: [].
Page Content Updated On 12/28/2022, Published on 12/28/2022
The information provided above is from the Utah Department of Health and Human Services IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Wed, 28 February 2024 21:14:04 from Utah Department of Health and Human Services, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Wed, 28 Dec 2022 12:30:14 MST