alexa Norovirus outbreak at a wildland fire base camp ignites investigation of restaurant inspection policies.


Occupational Medicine & Health Affairs

Author(s): Britton CL, Guzzle PL, Hahn CG, Carter KK

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Abstract Norovirus outbreaks occur worldwide and have been associated with congregate settings (e.g., military and recreational camps). Investigation of a norovirus outbreak at a wildland fire base camp identified 49 (27\%) illnesses among approximately 180 responders. Epidemiologic evidence implicated a restaurant as the infection source. Eight (89\%) of nine wildland fire responder groups who ate at the restaurant had ill members; no groups who ate elsewhere reported ill members. An environmental health specialist restaurant inspection identified lack of managerial knowledge to protect against foodborne disease one year after the restaurant's opening; earlier inspection after opening might have led to earlier intervention. States were surveyed to determine existence of any policy or rule for food establishment inspection after opening and inspection timing. Among 18 states, five had no state rule or policy; nine had a policy in place; and four required postopening inspection by rule. Further research is needed to evaluate post-opening inspection efficacy and timing.
This article was published in J Environ Health and referenced in Occupational Medicine & Health Affairs

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