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Medical News and Perspectives
December 7, 2005

Surveillance and Coordination Key to Reducing Foodborne Illness

JAMA. 2005;294(21):2683-2684. doi:10.1001/jama.294.21.2683

Few diners may realize that a single hamburger might contain meat from many cows, involve ingredients from different states or countries, and be handled at multiple facilities. Most are also unaware that if they become ill from eating a contaminated burger, the complexity of the food supply chain makes tracing outbreaks of foodborne illness a difficult task, according to health officials gathered in Washington, DC, in late October for a workshop on the challenges facing agencies charged with protecting the public from contaminated foods.