Good Below Is A List Of Factors That Have Been Considered In The Formulation Of The Hypothesis: Case Study Example
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Final Case Study
Describe the Organism Responsible for the Outbreak and Any Recent Outbreaks this Organism may have caused.
In the case study data and statistics presented, one thing can be safely said: that the people who showed at least more than one symptom of illness out of the six that were mentioned (i.e. nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, headache, and stomach cramps), is suffering from a medical condition that may be a good candidate for an epidemiologic topic. The most challenging part in doing this case study would be the identification of the organism or in this case, pathogen that led to the development of the six clinical signs and symptoms manifested by the sixty four subjects recruited for the case study. Viruses, bacteria, and parasites can all lead to at least one, if not all, of these clinical signs and symptoms.
Moreover, there are bacteria that can only be found in cases of individuals with diarrhea; the same goes for other illnesses and clinical signs and symptoms, and all other pathogens that can lead to illness manifestations. Additionally, there are cases wherein the symptoms of a bacteria and a virus overlap; it is also possible for different pathogens to have similar manifestations. All of these are the factors that make the identification of the exact pathogen or organism that caused all the illness manifestations among all the 64 individuals recruited in the case study difficult. In order to identify the most possible pathogen, and arrive at an answer using a systematic means, the clinical symptom that has the highest rate of prevalence was selected among the six.
The most common pathogen that causes it was then identified and researched. In this case, the most common clinical sign or symptom exhibited by the subjects was diarrhea. The tables of information on the windows excel file shows that at least 45% or at least half of the patients have diarrhea, followed by nausea and stomach cramps both of which have a prevalence rate of at least 33%, and then by headache, which has a prevalence rate of 25%. Therefore, diarrhea can be considered as the primary symptom that may be associated with the currently unknown pathogen. Diarrhea can be caused by viral, bacterial, or parasitic infections. The most common cause of diarrhea is via a bacterial infection, specifically by the staphylococcus bacteria. Other bacteria that may also induce diarrhea are salmonella, e coli, and Yersinia, among others. In this case, we can identify the pathogen as any of these bacteria (since bacterial infection is the most common cause of diarrhea—the main symptom of the disease that appears to be common among all 64 subjects.
The alpha organism in this case, in turn, would be the staphylococcus bacteria. An individual who has been infected with the staphylococcus bacteria often experience a brief episode of gastroenteritis first or an asymptomatic form of gastrointestinal impairment before progressing into a full pledged diarrhea. It may get accompanied by other clinical signs and symptoms such as headache, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, among others. In this case, majority of the associated signs and symptoms are also present on a significant number of people which only strengthens the argument that staphylococcus is indeed the culprit behind the outbreak.
Outbreaks of staphylococcus bacteria often occur during social events or whenever a certain amount of food that will be served in restaurants or any mass food production business gets infected. Individual cases of staphylococcus bacterium infection may also occur via poor sanitary and hygiene practices especially when it comes to the preparation of food as this bacterium is most commonly seen in meat, egg, and dairy products.
Describe the Epidemiology of the Organism (incubation period, modes of transmission, and common vehicles, susceptible populations, etc.)
As mentioned earlier, staphylococcus bacteria often spread whenever a certain amount of food that will be distributed to a large number of people gets infected. Incubation period of the bacteria often starts upon the first hour from exposure up to an average of six hours, after which, signs and symptoms such as diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting, may already occur .
Common mode of transmission of this pathogen is via hand or skin contact, although the number of cases of transmission as a result of poor sanitary practices when it comes to cooking products such as ham, tuna, egg, chicken, macaroni, and chicken, all of which can be found in a typical kitchen. Products that may be found on bakeries such as chocolate, sandwiches, pastries, pies, and dairy products, may also be a classified as a common vehicle for the transfer of the bacteria.
There are no specific population that are susceptible but it can be said that people living in dirty areas or those who are not used to the practice of washing their food ingredients thoroughly may be more susceptible than the others. Additionally, it has been reiterated in epidemiologic literatures that individuals who have a weak or compromised immune system either because of innate characteristics or secondary medical conditions are more susceptible than those who have a relatively stronger immune system. After all, bacteria are foreign bodies that the white blood cells in the body eliminate as facilitated by the immune system.
The staphylococcus bacteria are commonly transferred via food ingredients and derivatives
Outbreak of staphylococcus infection often happens in social gatherings where food that is infected get served, infecting all people who ingested the infected food along the process.
The staphylococcus bacteria are commonly transmitted as a result of poor sanitary practices with regards to food preparation.
Our hypothesis is that the 64 people who have diarrhea—which is one of the major clinical signs and symptoms of staphylococcus infection, were a part of a larger group of people who attended a social gathering or a party where a certain batch of food infected with staphylococcus bacteria were served and then later on ingested. Based on the information gathered from the interview, it was indeed a staphylococcus infection as evidenced by the presence of other comorbidities associated with staphylococcus infection including stomach cramps, nausea and vomiting, fever, among others.
Please include a table of the following demographics and outbreak information for the cases
Below is a table that shows that prevalence rate for each of the clinical signs and symptoms noted for every individual in the sample group, and the average number of hours that they were ill. It is important to note that
Based on the findings, it can be said that what happened to the 64 subjects who were the focus of the case study, was indeed a staphylococcus infection. Aside from the fact that most, if not all, of the persons interviewed for the case exhibited at least one sign of staphylococcus infection or the diarrhea-associated symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, fever, and stomach cramps, information about the different places where each of the subjects ate and the type of food that they actually ate also serve as evidence that this is indeed a case of staphylococcus infection.
Also, it has to be pointed out that using the duration of illness in hours as a variable in determining whether this is indeed a case of staphylococcus infection or not may produce erroneous inferences because of the fact that the time before the symptoms subside often depend on an individual’s body’s ability to neutralize the bacteria, and produce the necessary body defense mechanisms back up again prior to the infection, as evidenced by the significant deviations on the individual duration or illness per subject.
Steps that might be used to investigate and address the public health problem
Poor sanitation in restaurants, in fast food chains, and basically anywhere where food for a group of people is served, can be considered as a public health problem because it can and has sent a lot of people to the hospital because of staphylococcus infection, and its clinical signs and symptoms. The only solution to this problem is to implement a rules-based approach when it comes to food handling, especially in private enterprises in the food industry. After all, the health of their customers depends on the way how the food that they serve is handled. Provisions that aim to regulate the way how businesses prepare their food in a way that would make eating foods bought from public places safe for public consumption must be raised and implemented.
Discuss the policies/procedures/recommendations that must be put in place to prevent similar outbreaks, local, state, and federal policies.
This is a health issue that must be immediately addressed because it affects a large number of people—because as mentioned earlier, people often get infected by the staphylococcus bacteria in groups after ingesting a food that is likely to be infected with the bacteria too, and lack of regulatory practices to ensure proper food sanitation in places where food can be bought can lead to significant increases in the expenditure for health, medical, and healthcare services. Moreover, this is a public health issue that can be easily solved so there really is no reason for the government to not do at least something about it.
Currently, we do not have such provisions and so event at the most luxurious hotels, and especially in places where street foods can be bought, everyone may still be considered at risk of being infected by the pathogen that caused health problems for the 64 people who were the subject of this case study. Business enterprises who would be proven liable to the spread of disease via the food products that they sell, must then be held liable either by means of a fine or even suspension of license to operate. Of course, regulatory practices like this one we are proposing require the approval of the local, state, and the executive branch of government before they can be implemented.
Foodsafety.gov. "Staphylococcus." Foodsafety.gov (2014).
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