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Pathogens Compendium For Outbreak Investigations

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Describe about the Pathogens Compendium for outbreak investigations.



1) Post and discuss your interpretation of the data of the completed interviews

Out of the 25 people who attended the farewell party, data for 19 people are available. Out of the 19, 16 of them are reported sick within an average of 9 hours 20 minutes. Those sick had consumed meat of some form served at the party. Those reported healthy haven’t consumed meat except chicken curry by one of them. The outbreak cannot be attributed to rice or bread with dips (p = 0.53; RR = 1; 95% CI = 0.6-2.1) or to rocky road (p = 0.57; RR = 0.8 95% CI = 0.6-1.0) as most of the participants who are sick and health consumed both. The data points towards possible link with the consumption of meat. Calculation of chi square using the data of those who consumed meat and fell sick (n=16), consumed meat and healthy (n=1) and those consumed veg food and sick or healthy (n=0 or n=2) we found that consumption of meat resulted in being sick (p = 0.0175; RR =3; 95% CI, 0.6-14.8).

2) Which pathogen is suspected?

According to data presented and analysed we came to the conclusion that consumption of meat is the most possible cause of the outbreak. Estimation of average incubation period is around 9 hours. With the collection of events that took place we also that food was served cold and seem to be cooked in advance and stored in refrigerators. The whole scenario points to a microbial contamination and not just food poisoning by metals or adulteration of food, which are possible causes of diarrhoea. Out of the data available for 19 people who participated in the farewell party 16 consumed meat and 16 of them suffered from nausea, diarrhoea which is not associated with fever. Now with reference to the data available with Food borne pathogen compendium (Queensland Govt.) the most likely causative agent of the outbreak is Clostridium perfringens which matches the incubation period and disease symptoms (McClane, 2003). However, a precise investigation by analysing the food sample and stool of those who are suffering will provide a conclusive idea of the causative agent.



Queensland Government; Foodborne Pathogens Compendium for outbreak investigations – 2010; Retrieved on 10 October 2016,

McClane, B. A. (2003). Clostridium perfringens. FOOD SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY-NEW YORK-MARCEL DEKKER-, 91-104.


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