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Health officials report illness on EWU campus

UPDATED: Fri., April 26, 2013, 3:41 p.m.

Spokane Regional Health District officials confirm six people at Eastern Washington University developed a stomach illness starting Tuesday.

Those with intestinal upset included students, district spokeswoman Kim Papich said. They have since recovered from the brief illness, she said.

The source of the illness has not been found yet, but health investigators are not ruling out sources from food. Food inspectors will look for affected food the students may have been eating throughout the week as well as check ill employees that handle food.

A student reported being sick as late as Thursday night and sought medical attention. The symptoms have varied for each person, but they each include stomach problems, Papich added.

EWU officials are aware of the illness and are cooperating with the health district, university spokesman Dave Meany said. Those who reported sickness all ate from either Swoops and Baldy’s, he added. Both are located in the Pence Union Building.

Meany does not believe the cause is widespread. Food inspectors visited their facilities Thursday afternoon and found service practices in excellent condition, Meany added.

An E. coli bacteria outbreak sickened drill team campers in 2002 after they ate Caesar salad on their first night of camp at EWU, prior reports said. Romaine lettuce was identified as the culprit.

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