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New FDA Net Aims at Fast Response to Food Illness Outbreaks

FDA photo: Dianne Millazo

A new multi-disciplinary team will aim to quickly respond to human and animal foodborne illness outbreaks, the Food and Drug Administration said Thursday.

The FDA Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation Network will be comprised of epidemiologists, veterinarians, microbiologists, environmental health specialists, emergency coordinators, and risk communications specialists.

CORE will work with the Centers for Disease and Control, the Agriculture Department and state public health and agriculture agencies.

“In keeping with the reforms of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, CORE activities will learn from outbreaks to develop preventive systems, in an effort to reduce them from happening in the future,” said Mike Taylor, deputy commissioner of foods.

Dr. Kathleen F. Gensheimer will lead CORE as chief medical officer/outbreak director, a newly created position. Gensheimer previously served as chief epidemiologist for Maine.

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