Food poisoning on the rise in the Fraser Coast
FOOD poisoning is on the rise with an increase in food poisoning cases in the Fraser Coast and Bundaberg region in the past year.
Queensland Health has issued a warning to residents after alarming statistics have revealed only 1% of people know eggs should never be washed before cooking and only 21% of people know washing uncooked chicken is a health risk.
Health figures showed about 269 people have presented with food poisoning within the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service so far this year.
This was 112 more cases than the previous year, when 157 cases were recorded in the same period.
These figures were based on the number of cases of campylobacter - the most common cause of food poisoning in Australia.
Queensland health protection executive director Sophie Dwyer said the research showed 75% of people thought they understood safe food practices.
But she said people overestimated their knowledge of basic food hygiene and were suffering because of it.
"They're telling us that it's common sense - but when questioned, only 1% of the 1563 people surveyed knew that eggs should never be washed before cooking," Ms Dwyer said.
"That's because washing them makes it easier for any bacteria to get inside the egg from the shell."
She also said one in five people admitted to washing chicken before cooking it.
"That's alarming because washing raw chicken can spread campylobacter via splashing water."
Ms Dwyer said Christmas was a risky time for food poisoning because of the increase in eating leftovers.
She said it was not recommended to consume leftovers after two days.
"But a big risk remains in people's homes this Christmas - and that's because many people are way more clueless than they think.
"Let's be frank - nobody wants to spend the silly season on the loo because they didn't use their common sense."
- APN NEWSDESK