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PLoS One. 2015 Dec 3;10(12):e0140319. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0140319. eCollection 2015.

National Studies as a Component of the World Health Organization Initiative to Estimate the Global and Regional Burden of Foodborne Disease.

Author information

1
Institute of Environmental Science and Research, Christchurch, New Zealand.
2
Department of Virology, Parasitology and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Merelbeke, Belgium.
3
Department of Biomedical Sciences, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium.
4
Institute of Health and Society, Faculty of Public Health, Université catholique de Louvain, 1200 Brussels, Belgium.
5
Emerging Pathogens Institute, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States of America.
6
Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.
7
Division of Information, Evidence, Research and Innovation, WHO Regional Office for Europe, Copenhagen, Denmark.
8
Department of Public Health, Erasmus University Medical Center, Rotterdam, Netherlands.
9
Iowa State University, Ames, United States of America.
10
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, United States of America.
11
Division of Global Health Protection, Center for Global Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, United States of America.
12
Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona, Tucson, United States of America.
13
Institute of Public Health, Health & Environment Department, Food Safety & Nutrition Section, Tirana, Albania.
14
National Drug Authority, Ministry of Health, Kampala, Uganda.
15
International Health Policy Program, Ministry of Public Health, Bangkok, Thailand.
16
Department of Veterinary Medical Science, Graduate School of Agriculture and Life Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The World Health Organization (WHO) initiative to estimate the global burden of foodborne diseases established the Foodborne Diseases Burden Epidemiology Reference Group (FERG) in 2007. In addition to global and regional estimates, the initiative sought to promote actions at a national level. This involved capacity building through national foodborne disease burden studies, and encouragement of the use of burden information in setting evidence-informed policies. To address these objectives a FERG Country Studies Task Force was established and has developed a suite of tools and resources to facilitate national burden of foodborne disease studies. This paper describes the process and lessons learned during the conduct of pilot country studies under the WHO FERG initiative.

FINDINGS:

Pilot country studies were initiated in Albania, Japan and Thailand in 2011 and in Uganda in 2012. A brief description of each study is provided. The major scientific issue is a lack of data, particularly in relation to disease etiology, and attribution of disease burden to foodborne transmission. Situation analysis, knowledge translation, and risk communication to achieve evidence-informed policies require specialist expertise and resources.

CONCLUSIONS:

The FERG global and regional burden estimates will greatly enhance the ability of individual countries to fill data gaps and generate national estimates to support efforts to reduce the burden of foodborne disease.

PMID:
26633010
PMCID:
PMC4668835
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0140319
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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