Use of an Environmental Swabbing Strategy to Support a Suspected Norovirus Outbreak Investigation at a Retail Food Establishment


The public health burden related to norovirus is well described as the leading cause of foodborne outbreaks in the U.S. Norovirus investigations present challenges due to low infectious dose, multiple transmission routes, and the rapid onset and resolution of symptoms. Environmental sampling for norovirus can provide valuable data during public health investigations and lead to targeted education and interventions. In some instances, environmental data could be accessible when other data sources are limited or difficult to collect. We describe use of an environmental sampling strategy during a foodborne outbreak investigation to support the hypothesis for transmission from an ill food worker to restaurant patrons.


Speaker / Author: 
D.J. Irving, MPH, REHS, Tennessee Department of Health
Danny Ripley, Metro Public Health Department of Nashville/Davidson County
Craig Shepherd, MPH, REHS, Tennessee Department of Health
Leslie A. Waller, MPH, Metro Public Health Department Nashville/Davidson County
Jason R. Pepper, MLS(AMT) , Tennessee Department of Health
John Dunn, DVM, PhD, Tennessee Department of Health
Month Year: 
May 2021
Page #: 
Publication Month: 
May 2021
EH Topics: