Food Borne Illness Program

The East Shore District Health Department shares responsibility with Connecticut DPH in the surveillance, investigation and control of disease outbreaks. Finding the source and preventing the spread of gastro enteric illnesses known to be caused by contaminated food, water and person-to-person contact with infected persons or animals is the role of the local health department. The Connecticut Department of Public Health publishes a list of reportable infections each year. Physicians and laboratories are required to report this information to the local health department where it is handled securely to ensure confidentiality. Health Department intervention could include an interview to determine a food/travel history, risk factors for spread and health education. Food borne illness can be prevented.

Always treat raw poultry, beef and pork as if they were contaminated: Wrap fresh meats in plastic bags at the market to prevent blood from dripping onto other foods. Refrigerate foods promptly; minimize holding at room temperature. Cutting boards and counters used for preparation should be washed well immediately after use to prevent cross contamination with other foods. Ensure that the correct internal cooking temperature is reached-particularly when using a microwave.
1. Avoid eating raw or undercooked meats.
2. Avoid drinking or using raw milk.
3. Avoid eating raw eggs, uncooked foods with raw eggs (cookie dough) or undercooked foods containing raw eggs.
4. Encourage careful hand washing before and after food preparation.
5. Make sure children, particularly those who handle pets, wash their hands.
6. Always wash your hands after using the bathroom
Check the East Shore District Health Department at 203-481-4233 for more information.

Food-borne illness FAQs: