UPDATE: Health officials Boston College now say that nearly 80 students have become ill after eating at a campus-area Chipotle restaurant that has since been temporarily closed.
“More than 80 BC students have come in to Health Services with gastrointestinal symptoms, including vomiting and diarrhea,” Dr. Thomas I. Nary, director of the University Health Services and Sports Medicine at Boston College, told WCVB-TV on Tuesday afternoon. “All of these students indicated that they had eaten at the Chipotle restaurant in Cleveland Circle during the past weekend.”
While it’s still unclear what caused the students to become sick, Nary says students are testing for both E.coli and norovirus under the direction of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
—- Original Post —-
Chipotle’s nine-state E. coli outbreak may be expanding once again: health officials are looking into a connection between the ongoing contamination and a Boston College location after more than two dozen students reported becoming sick after eating at the chain restaurant.
The university notified the Massachusetts Department of Health that 30 students presented gastrointestinal symptoms and investigators are working to determine the cause of the illnesses, CNN reports (warning: links has video that auto plays).
Chipotle says that while it’s unsure the student illnesses are connected to the ongoing E. coli outbreak in Washington, Oregon, California, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Illinois, New York and Ohio, it has temporarily closed the location in Boston where the sick students ate while health officials look for a cause.
“We do not have any evidence to suggest that this incident is related (to) the previous E. coli incident. There are no confirmed cases of E. coli connected to Chipotle in Massachusetts,” the company said in a statement.
On Friday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded the outbreak from six states to nine; adding Pennsylvania, Maryland and Illinois.
In addition to reporting one illness in each of the new states, the CDC said it is aware of four more cases in Ohio (2), Washington (1), and California (1).
To date, 47 of 52 people interviewed about their illness reported eating at a Chipotle restaurant in the week before they got sick.
The CDC warned at the time that even more illnesses could be added to the outbreak list, as those that occurred after Nov. 11 might not be reported yet due to the time it takes between when person becomes ill and when the illness is reported — which can take an average of two to three weeks.
“CDC and state and local public health partners are continuing laboratory surveillance through PulseNet to identify additional ill people and to interview them,” the agency said.
Boston College says students sick after eating at Chipotle [CNN]