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 28 May 2018

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News

AMA and US government raise foodborne illness awareness

The American Medical Association (AMA) has this week announced that foodborne illnesses are a serious public health problem.

News image

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Together with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the USDA's Food Safety & Inspection Service (FSIS), more than 15,000 information kits have been made available free to physicians.

"Diagnosis and Management of Foodborne Illness, A Primer for Physicians," is designed to update physicians, nurses and other medical personnel. It also contains concise patient information for physicians to distribute.

The information is also available on the AMA website.

Each year in the United States there are approximately 76 million cases of foodborne illness each year, resulting in more than 5,000 deaths and 325,000 hospitalizations, according to Art Liang, MD, CDC's director of the Food Safety Initiative.

  • 76 million foodborne illness cases/year in US
  • 5,000 deaths
  • Many of these could be prevented through education
The American Medical Association

"While many foodborne illnesses, such as typhoid and cholera have faded, new and re-emerging ones have taken their place," comments AMA Trustee, J. Edward Hill.

The purpose of the kit is to raise awareness of relatively newly emerging infections, such as Cyclospora, resistant Salmonella, and some strains of E. coli.

The kit also contains concise, easy-to-understand patient information for physicians to distribute to their patients. Recommendations include safe food-handling tips and cooking temperature charts.

According to FSIS Associate Administrator Margaret Glavin, "Food safety is everyone's responsibility. Physicians can play an enormous role in educating their patients - especially their at-risk populations - about preventing foodborne illness."

The American Medical Association
26 January 2001

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