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      An assessment of the ability of routine restaurant inspections to predict food-borne outbreaks in Miami-Dade County, Florida.

      American Journal of Public Health
      Analysis of Variance, Case-Control Studies, Disease Outbreaks, prevention & control, Facility Regulation and Control, Florida, Foodborne Diseases, Forecasting, Humans, Logistic Models, Odds Ratio, Quality Assurance, Health Care, Restaurants, standards

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          This study sought to determine the usefulness of restaurant inspections in predicting food-borne outbreaks in Miami-Dade County, Fla. Inspection reports of restaurants with outbreaks in 1995 (cases; n = 51) were compared with those of randomly selected restaurants that had no reported outbreaks (controls; n = 76). Cases and controls did not differ by overall inspection outcome or mean number of critical violations. Only 1 critical violation--evidence of vermin--was associated with outbreaks (odds ratio = 3.3; 95% confidence interval = 1.1, 13.1). Results of restaurant inspections in Miami-Dade County did not predict outbreaks. If these findings are representative of the situation in other jurisdictions, inspection practices may need to be updated.

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