According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), foodborne disease in the U.S. affects an estimated 48 million persons, causes 128,000 hospitalizations and is responsible for approximately 3,000 deaths per year.
Foodborne disease may be caused by various pathogens, such as:
Illness severity may range from no signs or symptoms of illness (asymptomatic), to mild illness to severe illness requiring hospitalization or causing death.
A number of risk factors exist that often contribute to the spread of foodborne disease, such as:
Preventive measures such as proper hygiene and cooking techniques may limit or control the spread of foodborne disease.
The Virginia Department of Health maintains several roles in attempting to control for and prevent the occurrence of foodborne diseases, including: