From among cases of food poisoning listed in the Statistics of Food Poisoning in Japan, which have been published annually by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, we collated and analyzed cases that had occurred in hospitals and related facilities between 1996 and 2013 to obtain information that would be useful for prevention of food poisoning. On the basis of the menu in each case, we deduced the ingredients and the method used for cooking. Our results suggested that while cases of food poisoning due to Campylobacter and Salmonella in hospitals had decreased over the last 15 years, those caused by Norwalk virus had increased. Many cases caused by Salmonella had occurred after consumption of dishes including eggs and vegetable salads, whereas those caused by Clostridium perfringens involved stewed foods. However, in 90% of cases caused by Norwalk virus, the menu items were unidentified. Possible reasons for this may have been extremely low numbers of the virions on the food, which were undetectable by laboratory tests but still capable of causing infection, secondary transmission through finger infection during food preparation, and exposure to aerial infection from vomit and diarrheal feces in individual facilities. In addition to food sanitation, care with cooking procedures as well as personnel management is important for preventing this type of virus infection.
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