ATLANTA- A recent spike in Salmonella outbreaks across the US are linked to an increase in backyard flocks of live poultry by Americans according to the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention update this week.

At least 172 people have been reported ill from with the most recent one being on July 31.

The CDC is looking at 10 separate multi-state outbreaks of the infections. There are 961 cases reported within 48 states, leading to 215 hospitalizations and one death.

Laboratory findings from the CDC show that 10 outbreaks are linked to contact with live poultry, including chicks and ducklings, from multiple hatcheries. In interviews completed, 498 of the 672 (74 percent) ill people reported contact with live poultry in the week before illness started. 

The US Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY) did not comment on the situation, other than recommending compliance with the CDC’s safe handling tips for eggs from backyard poultry.

According to the CDC website, “Germs from these birds can cause a variety of illnesses in people, ranging from minor skin infections to serious illnesses that can cause death. To protect yourself from getting sick, thoroughly wash your hands with running water and soap after contact with birds or their droppings. Although running water and soap are best, if you aren't near a sink you can use alcohol-based hand sanitizer until you can get to a sink to wash your hands thoroughly.”