Stop Foodborne Illness is a national nonprofit public health organization dedicated to the prevention of illness and death from foodborne pathogens.

STOP Foodborne Illness has launched a campaign to cultivate greater awareness for emergency room personnel about foodborne illness.

Tags: ER Emergency Rooms Emergency Departments STOP Foodborne Illness foodborne pathogens E. coli O157:H7 Listeria Salmonella CDC American College of Emergency Physicians Las Vegas A&W Fresh Produce ACEP16 foodborne illness health

Blog Post | Wed March 30, 2016, 11:46 PM EST

  • Safety First

    Safety First

March 31, 2016 -- Too often we’ve heard devastating stories from families and individuals whose experience in the Emergency Department has led to greater tragedy, or worse. Being told to take their child home, that they have a “stomach flu” despite having had bloody stools for successive days; or to wait and see their primary care professionals.  STOP encourages more testing for foodborne illness. We believe that Emergency Department Physicians care about their patients, are well trained, and educated. But we also believe that if more can be done initially, tragedies could be averted.

In 2014, STOP Foodborne Illness CEO Deirdre Schlunegger told Food Safety News, “Children are not routinely tested for foodborne illness and the results can be devastating.” Along with mature adults, and immunocompromised persons such as cancer patients or transplant recipients, children younger than six are most vulnerable to foodborne illness.

Foodborne pathogens are a serious public health problem.

Each year, 1 in 6 Americans gets sick by consuming contaminated foods or beverages.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that each year 48 million people get sick, more than 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die as a result of foodborne illnesses.  CDC says, “Primarily the very young, the elderly, and the immunocompromised are affected. Recent changes in human demographics and food preferences, changes in food production and distribution systems, microbial adaptation, and lack of support for public health resources and infrastructure have led to the emergence of novel as well as traditional foodborne diseases. With increasing travel and trade opportunities, it is not surprising that now there is a greater risk of contracting and spreading a foodborne illness locally, regionally, and even globally.”

CDC further states, “Physicians and other health care professionals have a critical role in the prevention and control of food-related disease outbreaks.”

In Autumn 2015, STOP Foodborne Illness had their first crowd-sourced fundraiser to get this project started. In addition to several contributing individuals, Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce, of San Diego, CA, generously contributed $10,000.  Thanks to their support, STOP Foodborne Illness will be exhibiting at the American College of Emergency Physician’s (ACEP) Conference in Las Vegas, NV, October 16-19, 2016.

Blog Post | Wed March 30, 2016, 11:46 PM EST

Media Contacts

Cindy Kurman
Public Relations, Kurman Communications, Inc.
Deirdre Schlunegger