Food Poisoning

We investigate cases of food poisoning and certain other food borne illnesses which are notified to us by GPs, the public and other Local Authorities. The purpose of the investigation is to try to prevent the spread of illness within the community and to try and find possible causes.

Once a food poisoning notification is received, we will contact the person with the symptoms or their parent or guardian and ask them questions regarding;

  • what and where they have eaten prior to their illness;
  • whether there is any of the suspected food remaining;
  • details of their symptoms;
  • whether they have visited any particular places or been abroad recently;
  • whether anybody else they ate with also experienced any symptoms and;
  • whether or not their GP has taken a clinical sample.

If a person with symptoms is a food handler, or health care or nursery worker who has direct contact with, or serves food to, highly susceptible patients or persons in whom an intestinal infection would have serious consequences, special precautions will apply. They will be advised that they cannot return to food handling or care work until they have been symptom free for 48 hours and that they should inform their employer of their symptoms.

Parents or guardians of children aged under 5 years, or of children or adults unable to implement good standards of personal hygiene, will be advised to keep them away from school or similar establishments until they have been symptom-free for 48 hours.

If you suspect you are suffering food poisoning it is recommended that you contact your doctor as soon as possible, who might ask you to submit a sample for examination.

Consult your doctor immediately if the person affected is a baby, is elderly or has an existing illness or condition or if symptoms are prolonged or severe.

To report a suspected food poisoning, please contact the Environmental Health and Licensing Team using the online form or telephone 01643 703704.