The 2012 Foodborne Outbreak Response Survey for Public Health Responders

Announcing an exciting opportunity to help a PhD student earn his wings (and improve public health)!

The Institute of Medicine has long recognized the need to describe the organizational and environmental determinants of public health department performance. This need is intensified in programs related to public health emergency preparedness and response, where public health activities are critical to the mitigation of and recovery from disasters.

Foodborne disease outbreaks are regularly recurring disasters requiring public health action including laboratory testing, epidemiological investigation, environmental inspection, and regulatory product traceback.

Several determinants of public health performance for these activities have been proposed. In focus groups conducted in 2010 by the University of Minnesota, state and local foodborne disease responders identified predictors of performance including the following:

-Size of Jurisdiction

-Disease Reporting Laws

-Program Budget

-Organizational Structure

-Surveillance Processes

-Staff Training

-Staff Experience in Similar Disaster Response

-Inter-Professional Relationships and More

To build the evidence base of determinants of health department performance, my group at the University of Minnesota has developed an online survey for state and local epidemiologists and environmental health professionals involved in foodborne disease outbreak response in the United States. The goal of the survey is to summarize the outbreak investigation training and work experience of anonymous foodborne disease outbreak responders.

If you are an epidemiologist or environmental health professional, please consider reviewing the survey consent and participating at the link below.

If you have questions about the survey, please contact Evan Henke, PhD Candidate at the University of Minnesota, at