Methods for Hypothesis Generation during Multistate Foodborne Disease Outbreak Investigations
Sunday, June 9, 2013: 12:30 PM-5:00 PM
Ballroom G (Pasadena Convention Center)
CSTE, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is offering a workshop on the methods for hypothesis generation during multistate foodborne disease outbreak investigations.  Successful hypothesis development is an iterative and dynamic process. When exposure to a food is suspected, the investigators next must consider the large number of foods that may be the source or vehicle of infection. The number of different food items is vast.  The investigation needs to narrow the list to the foods that the ill people actually ate before they got sick, and then further narrow it to the specific foods that many of the ill people remember eating. Health officials interview persons who are ill to find out where and what they ate in the days or weeks before they got sick. This workshop will review using descriptive epidemiology, standardized questionnaires and patient interviewing techniques, focusing on approaches to open-ended interviewing in order to generate hypotheses that explain the source of infections.

12:30 PM

12:45 PM
Overview of Hypothesis Generating process
What demographics and epi curves can tell you, learning from the history of PFGE patterns, past outbreaks with serotype/PFGE pattern, non-human isolates.
1:30 PM
Starting with the Shotgun - Panel Discussion
Different flavors of the shotgun (OR, MN, NHGQ), assimilating and looking at data from questionnaires, searching for common exposures (including restaurants/grocery stores), sub clusters, shopper cards, receipts, the FoodNet population survey, using the binomial, when/how you narrow focus/shorten questionnaire or decide to move to “open ended” questions, traceback as part of the epi investigation, food testing as hypothesis testing.
2:15 PM
Case Study
Two real world examples of starting with the shotgun
  • Do you have a leading hypothesis?
  • When to revise, expand, and/or move to open ended interviewing?

2:45 PM
Lecture on Tips & Tricks for Open Ended Interviews for Multistate Investigations

3:00 PM

3:30 PM
Class Participation in Open-Ended discussion

4:30 PM
Putting It All Together Multistate Outbreak of E. coli O157 Link to Prepackaged Cookie Dough

4:45 PM
Wrap up & Evaluations

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