Monroe County, Indiana

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Foodborne Illness and Complaint Investigations

Foodborne Illness and Complaint Investigations

I. COMPLAINTS

A complaint investigation is generated when the public informs the Monroe County Health Department that they have a concern about the sanitary conditions or food handling procedures of a food service establishment. Often times, a routine inspection and a complaint investigation will be performed simultaneously. We generally respond to complaints within 24 hours after receiving the complaint.

II. HOW TO FILE A COMPLAINT

If you have a consumer concern regarding a food establishment in Monroe County, or if you have experienced a possible illness that you feel was caused by a food establishment in Monroe County, please complete the Foods Division Consumer Complaint Form and email it to all of the following email addresses: jgbrown@co.monroe.in.us, nwagner@co.monroe.in.us. One of the Food Sanitarians will follow up on the complaint.

III. FOODBORNE ILLNESS/OUTBREAK INVESTIGATIONS

A foodborne illness outbreak is defined as:

"An illness that occurs between two or more people who are unrelated and have eaten a common food that a lab has confirmed as the source of the outbreak."

Many cases of foodborne illness go unreported as consumers are unaware that gastrointestinal symptoms are often caused by consuming food or drink that has been contaminated by bacteria, viruses or toxins produced by certain bacteria. If a food service establishment is suspected of causing a foodborne illness or an outbreak, the following procedures are used:

  • A food case history is taken and recorded from the consumers who have become ill.
  • Food staff will visit the food service establishment where suspect food was served.
  • Food staff will perform an investigation at the suspected establishment. Employees will be interviewed, food handling procedures will be scrutinized, and sanitary conditions of the establishment will be documented. Employees and management are asked about their health status and stool samples will be collected if needed.
  • Food samples are collected if available and sent to the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH).
  • If an outbreak is confirmed, personnel from ISDH will assist in the Epidemiology Investigation, collect and analyze samples, and assist MCHD in developing a sanitation plan for the food establishment implicated in the outbreak.

For up-to-date foodborne illness information and food recalls, visit:


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Contact Us

Penny Caudill,
Health Administrator
Health Building
119 W 7th St
Bloomington, IN 47404
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  • Phone: (812) 349-2543
  • Fax: (812) 339-6481
  • Staff Directory
  • M - F 8:00 a.m - 4:00 p.m.

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