WA Health Dept: 22 sickened by raw oysters

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OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- The Washington Health Department says 22 people have been sickened by eating raw oysters that contained a naturally occurring bacteria.

Officials say 18 cases of vibriosis are linked to commercial operations and four cases to recreational harvesting in Puget Sound and on the Washington coast. The Health Department said Thursday that cooking shellfish thoroughly will prevent the illness and is always a good idea.

The bacteria thrive during the summer months of July and August in warm temperatures and low tides.

Vibriosis poisoning symptoms include diarrhea, nausea, cramps, vomiting, fever, headache and chills.