A new report on preliminary 2022 data from the U.S. Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet) finds that enteric infections in the U.S. have generally returned to or exceeded levels observed in 2016–2018, before the COVID-19 pandemic.
FoodNet tracks the number of reported infections per 100,000 people (incidence rate) for eight pathogens. Compared to the average incidence in 2016–2018, incidence in 2022 remained the same for Campylobacter, Listeria, Salmonella, and Shigella. Incidence increased for Cyclospora, Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC), Vibrio, and Yersinia.
Campylobacter and Salmonella remain the top causes of enteric infections monitored by FoodNet. Increased use of culture-independent diagnostic tests, which allow doctors to rapidly determine the cause of a patient’s illness, likely contributed to the increased detection of infections.
FoodNet data show a lack of progress during 2022 toward Healthy People 2030 goals for reducing foodborne illness. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) calls for better coordinated efforts among public health agencies, regulatory agencies, industry, and consumer groups to prevent foodborne illness.
FoodNet is a collaboration among CDC, ten state health departments, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).