Case of typhoid confirmed in Florida

May 26, 2010 at 6:18 PM

MIAMI, May 26 (UPI) -- Florida health officials have launched an investigation after a cook at a local chain restaurant tested positive for typhoid fever, authorities said.

Eighty-five employees of a Chili's restaurant in Bayside, Fla., are being tested for the bacterial infection by the Miami-Dade Health Department, WPLG-TV, Miami, reported Wednesday.

The department has also alerted area doctors asking them to report anyone showing symptoms of typhoid fever, which can include fever, weight loss, and diarrhea or constipation, WPLG-TV said.

The cook became weak and disoriented while working in the restaurant's kitchen, and Chili's management sent him for medical attention.

"We have established he was working at the time he was contagious," Dr. Vincent Conte of the Florida Department of Health said.

Cases of typhoid fever are rare, Miami-Dade officials said, with only three cases reported on average in the county each year.

Typhoid fever can be treated with antibiotics, WPLG-TV said.

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