A collaboration between WHO, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other international public health organizations.
In developing countries, where diarrhoeal diseases are particularly prevalent, determining the proportion due to foodborne diseases can be difficult. Clinical laboratory and public health infrastructure to perform such assessments is not present in all nations. A 1997 WHO survey revealed that up to one-third of WHO Member States indicated a lack of basic infrastructure for laboratory-based surveillance for foodborne diseases.
Recognizing the public health importance of foodborne diseases and the need to strengthen public health infrastructure globally, WHO Global Salm-Surv, a World Health Organization sponsored program, was launched in 2000. WHO Global Salm-Surv is a capacity-building program that trains international microbiologists and epidemiologists on foodborne disease laboratory-based surveillance and outbreak detection and response through training courses and other program activities.
Founding members of WHO Global Salm-Surv included the World Health Organization, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (United States of America) and the Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research (Denmark). In recent years, additional partners have joined WHO Global Salm-Surv: Reseau International des Instituts Pasteur (France), Public Health Agency of Canada, Animal Sciences Group (Netherlands), Food and Drug Administration (United States of America), Enter-net (European Union) and OzFoodNet (Australia).
Foodborne and other infectious enteric diseases are a common cause of illness, disability and death worldwide. We believe they are preventable and therefore, place an unnecessary burden on society. Our vision is that all countries will prevent and control these diseases.
To promote integrated, laboratory-based surveillance and foster intersectoral collaboration among human health, veterinary and food-related disciplines, thereby enhancing the capacity of countries to detect, respond to and prevent foodborne diseases.
Details about the WHO Global Salm-Surv Program, including descriptions of training and program activities, can be found at www.who.int/salmsurv/en.
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