Public health policy targeting populations at greatest risk can be used to significantly reduce the burden of foodborne disease. This study calculated incidence rates, disability adjusted life years, and quality adjusted life years estimates for salmonellosis and campylobacteriosis, adjusted for underreporting. Investigators then looked at how these measures of disease burden can contribute to the policy debate on the public health significance of foodborne disease. Targeting food safety activities through proactive public health policy and by using underreporting estimates of reported cases of foodborne illness may raise the issue of foodborne disease in the policy agenda.
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Using Underreporting Estimates to Mobilize the Development of Targeted, Proactive Food Safety Policy
Vegetable Lactic Acid Fermentations Under the Food and Drug Administration Model Food Code: Risk Analysis and Safe Processing Guidance
Fermented foods have become a part of our cultural heritage and chefs and retailers seek to offer these tasty foods to their customers. Fermenting foods at the retail food service level, however, is considered a special process under the Food and Drug Administration model Food Code and requires a food safety plan. This special report was developed to assist both operators and regulators in preparing or reviewing a food safety plan for vegetable fermentation, including pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, and fermented vegetable juices.
84.5 | 14-18
Voluntary Approaches to Solid Waste Management in Small Towns: A Case Study of Community Involvement in Household Hazardous Waste Recycling
Waterborne outbreaks of salmonellosis are uncommon. The Tennessee Department of Health investigated a salmonellosis outbreak of 10 cases with the only common risk factor being exposure to a single splash pad. Risks included water splashed in the face at the splash pad and no free residual chlorine in the water system. We surveyed water quality and patron behaviors at splash pads statewide. Of the 29 splash pads participating in the water quality survey, 24 (83%) used a recirculating water system. Of the 24, 5 (21%) water samples were tested by polymerase chain reaction and found to be positive for E. coli, Giardia, norovirus, or Salmonella. Among 95 patrons observed, we identified common high-risk behaviors of sitting on the fountain or spray head and putting mouth to water. Water venue regulations and improved education of patrons are important to aid prevention efforts.
79.10 | 8-12
Water Quality Trading Mechanism Enhances Willingness to Upgrade Rural Household Septic Systems in the Western Lake Erie Basin, Northwest Ohio
Water quality trading (WQT) is a market-based mechanism that aims to improve water quality in a way that maximizes economic efficiency while conserving environmental integrity. It is a compliance approach that allows point sources, such as factories, to meet regulatory obligations by using pollutant reductions created by another source, such as local farms, which has lower pollution control costs. The objective of this study was to explore the possibility of expanding the use of WQT from agriculture to rural septic systems, an often-neglected nonpoint source of nutrients to Lake Erie. Septic system upgrades in northwestern Ohio are of special interest because the soil conditions in this area pose a limitation to the effectiveness of nutrient removal for conventional soil-based systems. We assessed the willingness of septic system users to upgrade their systems using three scenarios emphasizing climate change, governmental regulation, or WQT. We found that septic system users were most interested in upgrades under the WQT scenario. The idea of WQT was better accepted in certain locations where septic system users were more concerned about the environment, perceived the local water quality to be degraded, and were aware of the limitation of their septic systems. Pilot WQT projects should focus on approaching these users.
82.6 | 8-15
In early 2005, the Howard County Health Department began a sampling initiative to evaluate the potential presence of elevated naturally occurring radionuclides in individual drinking well water supplies of Howard County residents. Earlier preliminary test findings from the U.S. Geological Survey and subsequent discussions with the Maryland Department of the Environment led to sampling for gross alpha (GA) and gross beta (GB) particles, plus confirming radium-226/-228 for both existing and newly developed residential properties. In 2009, sampling focused in and directly around the portion of the county containing the Baltimore Gneiss geological formation. More than 2,061 properties were tested with 3,091 samples collected and analyzed. Greater than 19% of properties sampled had elevated GA and/or GB levels, while select data combinations for untreated GA, GB, and radium-226/-228 indicated an elevated combined radium-226/-228 in 42.4% of those results. Also revealing were results with elevated radium-226/-228 with GB levels well below the current recommended standard. In this special report, we describe ongoing testing efforts and treatment effectiveness for residents within Howard County.
83.10 | 14-21
During the summer of 2014 an outbreak of tickborne relapsing fever (TBRF) occurred in a group of high school students and staff at a youth camp, which was reported to Coconino County Public Health Services District. Six confirmed and five probable cases of TBRF occurred. During the environmental investigation two rodents tested positive for TBRF, but the vector, soft ticks, could not be found in their “normal” habitat. Ticks were finally located in areas not typical for soft ticks.
78.8 | 8-11
Worksite Built Environment and Objectively Measured Physical Activity While at Work: An Analysis Using Perceived and Objective Walkability and Greenness
The role of worksite environments in promoting physical activity (PA) remains largely unexplored. With workers in the U.S. spending half of their waking day in their work environment, the workplace could be an important venue for the promotion of health and PA. We examined associations between PA gained while at work and the built environment around the workplace. We measured PA using accelerometer devices in a sample of 119 participants of the Supports at Home and Work for Maintaining Energy Balance study, with a wear time of 1 week. Measures of built environment included perceived walkability, two different measures of objective walkability, and greenness.
Working in an environment perceived as walkable was associated with more minutes of PA while at work in all models. When measured objectively, walkability was found significant in the adjusted models controlling for both home walkability and amount of PA gained in nonwork related activities. Greenness of the work environment was found nonsignificant. Findings suggest investing in walkable environments around the workplace or having worksites located in walkable areas can contribute to increased minutes of PA for employed people in the U.S.
81.7 | 20-26
Consumer-generated restaurant review sites offer a wealth of information about dining options. These sites are based on consumers’ experiences; therefore, it is useful to assess the relevance between restaurant review (for food quality) and retail food facilities (RFFs) inspection results (for sanitation) from health departments. This study analyzed New York City restaurant ratings on Yelp.com to determine if there was a relationship to RFFs’ violation scores for those same facilities found on the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene web pages. In addition, we assessed differences between RFFs defined on Yelp as quick service versus full service, and chains versus nonchains. Yelp ratings were found to be correlated only with sanitation in chain RFFs.
78.10 | 8-12