Outbreak Detection

Outbreaks are detected in a variety of ways at the Minnesota Department of Health.

  • Routine surveillance interviews
    • Some outbreaks are detected through routine surveillance activities that include interviewing all persons who are diagnosed with a reportable disease.

    • An investigation is initiated when multiple cases report a common exposure, such as eating a common food item, eating at a common restaurant, or having contact with an identical water source, daycare, or school.

  • Reports of suspected foodborne illness
    • The Minnesota Department of Health receives reports of suspected foodborne illness from the general public through local health departments or through the MDH foodborne illness hotline.
    • Healthcare providers may report suspected foodborne illness outbreaks if they see an unexpected number of patients with gastrointestinal illness.

    • Restaurants, daycare providers, schools, and healthcare facilities (i.e., hospitals, long-term care facilities) may also report outbreaks to MDH.

Updated Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 02:49PM