Conference abstract

Investigation and response of foodborne outbreak in Tsito, Ho West District, Volta region - Ghana, 2017

Pan African Medical Journal - Conference Proceedings. 2017:3(62).24 Oct 2017.
doi: 10.11604/pamj-cp.2017.3.62.184
Archived on: 24 Oct 2017
Contact the corresponding author
Keywords: Foodborne disease outbreak, food borne illness, diarrhea
Oral presentation

Investigation and response of foodborne outbreak in Tsito, Ho West District, Volta region - Ghana, 2017

Joshua Marvin Tetteh1,&, Eugene Addo1, Charles Adjei Mensah1

1Food and Drugs Authority, Ho, Ghana

&Corresponding author
Joshua Marvin Tetteh, Food and Drugs Authority, Ho, Ghana


Introduction: foodborne diseases (FBD) have emerged as a major public health problem worldwide. Though the global burden of FBD is unknown, foodborne diarrheal diseases kill 1.9 million children globally every year. On 28th March 2017, the Food and Drugs Authority, Volta Region was notified about a suspected foodborne disease outbreak involving basic school teachers of Tsito community. We investigated to determine the magnitude, source and implement control and preventive measures.

Methods: an epidemiological investigation was conducted by means of interviews using outbreak investigation forms and hospital record review. A case was defined as any person in the affected community abdominal cramps, weakness, vomiting and or diarrhea between 23rd March and 5th April 2017 and had eaten from the teacherís debar grounds. Foodborne Illness awareness and food safety tips were done in the casesí homes and local schools during community visits.

Results: out of a total of 114 affected persons, 112 were available for interview, with 80% being female teachers. Overall attack rate was 83.92% (94/112) with one miscarriage recorded. The median age of cases was 45 years. Seventy-five (79.78%) cases were females. At the time of investigation, the etiologic agent and risk factors have not yet been established but all cases who presented with symptoms took only banku, grilled tilapia with hot pepper (Attack Rate: 83.92%). For 74.46% the onset time was between 11pm to 4am. About 11% the affected persons who sought medical attention were diagnosed of gastroenteritis, food poisoning and acute appendicitis.

Conclusion: the source of the outbreak was not established during the investigation. Staphylococcus aureus appears to be the pathogen possibly responsible for some of the diarrheal diseases however further investigation is been carried to ascertain the exact source. The community was encouraged to practice good personal and environmental hygiene practices to prevent potential outbreaks.