Community preparedness for outbreaks of acute gastroenteritis

26 November 2019

Article: 53/4707

In order to assess how communities are involved in the public health response for outbreaks of acute gastroenteritis, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) developed a case study project in two EU/EEA countries. The premise for the project is that affected communities are increasingly recognised as key resources that can be utilised during public health emergencies, and that the concerns and experiences of ordinary people should be harnessed as an important part of the response.

ECDC has published a report summarising the findings of the two case studies, one based in Iceland and the other in Ireland. 

The Icelandic case study focused on an outbreak of norovirus that emerged during an international scouting event in August 2017. The Irish case study examined verocytotoxin-producing Escherichia coli (VTEC) as a wider public health issue, but also with a particular focus on a single outbreak that occurred at a childcare facility in mid-2018.

Lessons learned from this project confirm the importance of recognising the community as a key partner in public health emergency preparedness and response.

Source: ECDC, 19 November 2019