Public health officials investigating a drug-resistant salmonella outbreak in 2015 still don't know the exact source after a pork-industry lobbying group on behalf of the farmers prevented them from visiting farms that provided pigs to a contaminated slaughterhouse.
Most of us know by now we shouldn't overuse antibiotics so we don't end up with bacterial infections that the drugs can't treat. But it's interesting to know that more than 12 million pounds of medically important antibiotics sold in this country are not for use in humans; they're for livestock. And the antibiotics are driving the spread of drug-resistant bacteria in the animals that can get passed on to us through food if we don't cook and handle it properly.
Yet it's almost impossible to get on the farms to conduct inspections and stop infection outbreaks from spreading, even for public health officials.
Dr. Scott Lindquist: My job is to look for outbreaks. When I see them, I describe them and I'm supposed to stop them. Very simple.