Seven cases of people being sickened by salmonella have been reported in the county since June 24, and the county Health Department is investigating.

In all of 2004, there were 18 cases in the county.

The seven cases being investigated were reported by people who do not live in the same community. Two patients required hospitalization, but have since been discharged. All of the cases involve adults ranging in age from 37 to 76.

Salmonella bacteria are spread by eating or drinking contaminated food or water or by contact with infected people or animals. Symptoms usually develop within one to six days.