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Infectious Disease: Enteric Diseases

In 2017, the Food Safety Subcommittee changed its name and scope to the Enteric Diseases Subcommittee. This group is made up of public health professionals dedicated to building epidemiology capacity for the detection and prevention of illness due to enteric pathogens from foodborne, waterborne, and zoonotic transmission routes. The Enteric Diseases Subcommittee will be conducting an assessment of Food Safety epidemiology capacity in the fall of 2017; the findings and recommendations from which will be compiled into a summary report. Annually, the Subcommittee hosts a webinar series and topics are solicited from membership on an ongoing basis.

CSTE co-chairs the Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak and Response (CIFOR), a multidisciplinary working group convened by CSTE and CDC in 2005 to increase collaboration and to reduce the burden of foodborne illness in the U.S. CIFOR is working on a number of projects, including a law project, an epidemiology-laboratory integrated reporting pilot project to more rapidly identify outbreaks, and a project to identify foodborne disease metrics.

Resources:

Second Edition of the CIFOR Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response and CIFOR Toolkit: The Second Edition of the CIFOR Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response is now available. These guidelines were developed by a broad range of foodborne disease experts from local, state and federal agencies to aid government agencies responsible for investigating, managing and preventing foodborne disease.

In 2011, the CIFOR Toolkit was released to aid in the implementation of the Guidelines at the state and local levels using three steps: describing current activities and procedures, prioritizing CIFOR Guidelines recommendations to address needed improvements, and making plans to implement the selected recommendations. CSTE funded 23 state-based trainings in 2011-2012 to use the CIFOR Toolkit and identify recommendations from the Guidelines to implement.

Second Edition of the CIFOR Toolkit for the Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response
The Second Edition of the CIFOR Toolkit for the Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response is now available. The Second Edition of the Toolkit has been developed to aid in the implementation of the second edition of the Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response, which was released in 2014. The Toolkit is intended to further the ability of state and local health departments to understand the contents of the Guidelines, to conduct a self-assessment of their outbreak detection and investigation procedures, and to implement appropriate recommendations from the nine chapters in the Guidelines.

The Toolkit walks public health practitioners through a series of worksheets divided into eleven “Focus Areas”. The Focus Areas are designed to help jurisdictions identify recommendations from the Guidelines that would be most useful for their jurisdiction. Learn more.

  • The Epi-Ready course is a team-based training for public health professionals involved in foodborne disease outbreak investigations. CSTE worked with consultant Jeanette Stehr-Green to revise the course content to reflect advances in outbreak response and approaches to public health training since the creation of the original content. The revised content includes an updated curriculum, a modified schedule, more interactive material for the participants, and updated instructor materials.
  • Development of Target Ranges for Selected Performance Measures in the CIFOR Guidelines: Chapter 8 of the CIFOR Guidelines was developed for use by state and local public health agencies to evaluate the performance of their foodborne disease surveillance, outbreak investigation and control programs. Standardized performance criteria and metrics promote a common understanding of the key elements of surveillance, outbreak investigation and control activities, facilitate training of staff and allow for the aggregation of data to evaluate program effectiveness and identify specific needs for improvement. The aim of the metrics project was to develop specific metrics and target ranges for 16 selected performance indicators in Chapter 8 of the Guidelines to help agencies demonstrate their public health performance and effectiveness for foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak control activities.
  • CIFOR law project: New CIFOR documents gives tools to public health agencies and jurisdictions to improve their legal preparedness to conduct surveillance for foodborne diseases and respond to outbreaks. These documents provide guidance for outbreaks both within agencies’ jurisdictions and across multiple states and other jurisdictional boundaries. Each of the three documents is designed to address a discrete but related research need and audience.
    • The Analysis of State Legal Authorities describes and analyzes the types of state legal authorities currently available to conduct foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak response activities.
    • The Practitioners’ Handbook on Legal Authorities is a practical guide for public health professionals with roles in foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak response.
    • The Menu of Legal Options can be considered by state public health officials and policy makers when reviewing their jurisdiction’s legal authorities to conduct foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak response actions.
For more information about the Enteric Diseases Subcommittees and their activities, please contact Thuy Kim. Click here to view other Infectious Disease Steering Committee activities.
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