P1-144 Michigan Rapid Response Team (RRT): Improving Multi-disciplinary and Multi-agency Collaboration during Food and Feed Emergency Responses

Sunday, July 26, 2015
Exhibit Hall (Oregon Convention Center)
Ted Gatesy, Michigan Dept. of Agriculture and Rural Development, East Lansing, MI
Introduction: Reducing response time to food and feed contamination incidents is critical in reducing the burden of illnesses and deaths associated with each incident. The Food and Drug Administration’ Rapid Response Team (RRT) Program increasing multi-agency collaboration in Michigan and is an effective method used to control the magnitude of the incident. Partnerships by federal, state and local agencies, reduces duplication of effort and disseminates pertinent information in a synergistic manner. Multi-disciplinary participation provides expertise in toxicology, epidemiology, regulatory, laboratory and emergency management.

Purpose: Rapid Response Teams (RRTs) serve to coordinate multi-disciplinary and multi-agency emergency personnel in a foodborne outbreak or other emergency situation. 

Methods: Tabletop Training Exercises and After Action Reports involving all response partners improve working relationships and communication, while preparing the RRT for future incidents. RRT environmental assessments and environmental sampling provide ongoing training for RRT staff.

Results: Foodborne outbreaks responses to Salmonella, STEC and cyclospora, pesticide and toxin contamination of animal feed, and sulfa drug residue contamination of dairy products highlighted the MI RRT involvement in 2014.

Significance: Preparation and partnerships provided effective responses by multi-disciplinary and multi-agency emergency personnel in limiting the size and scope of numerous incidents in the state of Michigan.