Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

About the Environmental Health Specialists Network (EHS-Net)

EHS-Net (pronounced S-Net) is a collaborative forum of environmental health specialists whose mission is to improve environmental health practice and prevent foodborne illness outbreaks. These specialists collaborate with epidemiologists and laboratorians to identify and prevent environmental factors contributing to foodborne illness outbreaks.

EHS-Net assists state and local health departments in their efforts to improve the practice of environmental health service programs. EHS-Net conducts environmental assessments to determine why the pathogen was present in the outbreak environment in such a way that exposed people to illness. EHS-Net works to

  • Identify environmental antecedents (underlying factors) to illness and disease outbreaks.
  • Translate findings into improved prevention efforts using a systems-based approach.
  • Offer training opportunities to current and future environmental health specialists.
  • Strengthen collaboration among epidemiology, laboratory, and environmental health programs.

Read about how EHS-Net’s environmental public health practice work supports CDC’s Winnable Battle on Food Safety. [PDF - 479 KB]

Food-Safety Projects

EHS-Net funds state and local health departments to conduct multisite food safety projects. These food-safety projects are grouped in four focus areas:

  • Restaurant-related foodborne illness outbreaks
  • General public’s beliefs about gastrointestinal illness
  • Restaurant food handling and food safety practices
  • Retail food safety programs

EHS-Net grantees also conduct food-safety studies in their individual sites.

System Theory

EHS-Net work is based on system theory, which focuses on understanding the complete system and the underlying interactions of all the forces that make up that system.

National Environmental Assessment Reporting System (NEARS)

NEARS supports identification of factors that can be routinely monitored by food-safety programs to prevent or reduce the risk for foodborne illness outbreaks associated with food-service establishments.

EHS-Net Information System

The EHS-Net Information System supports EHS-Net’s data collection activities in the area of foodborne illness outbreak prevention. The system is also available for use by government agencies and nonprofit organizations to support their data collection needs relating to environmental health.

See how you can use the EHS-Net Information System to support your next data collection activity.

Water-Safety Projects

In fiscal year 2010–2015, EHS-Net conducted multisite water-safety projects as well as studies in individual states.

Top of Page