More than 550 people have fallen sick and two have died because of Salmonella infection in a Venezuelan state.

Governor of Anzoátegui, Antonio Barreto Sira, said a new Salmonella outbreak has been detected with 571 people ill and at least two deaths. Anzoátegui is in northeastern Venezuela.

Data from the Anzoatiguense Institute of Health (Saludanz) shows the Simón Bolívar municipality is mainly affected, with 262 cases in the El Carmen parish and 276 in San Cristóbal, while 23 were sick in the Sotillo municipality and nine in Urbaneja. The most affected communities include Campo Claro, El Espejo, Las Casitas, Brisas del Mar, Rómulo Gallegos, El Viñedo and Mesones.

Contaminated water suspected
Barreto Sira attributed the outbreak to problems with distribution of drinking water throughout the state but particularly in the north plus the limited collection of garbage and solid waste.

He added that many people suffer from a lack of water and when it reaches them, it poses a risk to their health. Barreto Sira advised people to boil water before drinking or using it.

Sampling is being done to check the chlorination of water and presence of bacteria and other agents potentially harmful to health.

Officials are going from house-to-house to deliver water treatment tablets and offer health education.

Earlier this year, Saludanz reported 500 adults and children had been affected by a Salmonella outbreak that began in 2020. Most of those ill were from the El Carmen and San Cristóbal areas. This incident was also linked to contaminated water.

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