M Kate Thomas

M Kate Thomas
Public Health Agency of Canada | PHAC · Centre for Food-borne Environmental and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases

MSc PhD

About

56
Publications
14,451
Reads
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2,335
Citations
Citations since 2016
11 Research Items
1572 Citations
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200250
Education
September 2006 - May 2010
University of Guelph
Field of study
  • Epidemiology
September 2002 - July 2004
University of Guelph
Field of study
  • Epidemiology

Publications

Publications (56)
Article
Nontyphoidal Salmonella (NTS) is a leading cause of acute gastrointestinal illness in Canada, and reported cases have been on the rise since the early 2000s. To address this trend, agri-food industry partners and government have worked to identify and implement interventions, guided by the enhanced information provided by whole-genome sequencing, t...
Article
Many foods have the potential to cause foodborne illness; however, some pose a higher risk. Data were collected through the Foodbook study, a population-based telephone survey conducted between 2014 and 2015 that assessed 10,942 Canadians' food exposures using a 7-day recall period. The 19 foods included in the survey were identified as high risk f...
Article
Full-text available
Animal companionship can have many physical and psychological benefits; however, animals can also be a source of zoonotic infection, including enteric illnesses; it has been estimated that in Canada, nearly 85,000 enteric illnesses due to eight pathogens occur each year related to animal contact. There is a lack of baseline data on animal‐related e...
Article
Full-text available
In Canada, over 400,000 enteric diseases related to drinking water occur each year, highlighting the importance of understanding sources of Canadians' drinking and recreational water exposures. To address this need, a population-based telephone survey of 10,942 Canadians was conducted between 2014 and 2015, assessing Canadian's drinking water sourc...
Article
Full-text available
Acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) is an important public health issue, with many pathogen sources and modes of transmission. A one-year telephone survey was conducted in Canada (2014-2015) to estimate the incidence of self-reported AGI in the previous 28 days and to describe health care seeking behaviour, using a symptom-based case definition. E...
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Full-text available
Understanding consumers' food safety practices and knowledge supports food safety education for the prevention of foodborne illness. The objective of this study was to describe Canadian consumer food safety practices and knowledge. This study identifies demographic groups for targeted food safety education messaging and establishes a baseline measu...
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Objective: Enteric illness represents a significant burden of illness in Canada and internationally. Building on previous research, an expert elicitation was undertaken to explore the routes of transmission for 28 pathogens involved in enteric illness in Canada. This article considers the subcategories of foodborne, waterborne, and animal contact...
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Animal contact is a potential transmission route for campylobacteriosis, and both domestic household pet and petting zoo exposures have been identified as potential sources of exposure. Research has typically focussed on the prevalence, concentration, and transmission of zoonoses from farm animals to humans, yet there are gaps in our understanding...
Data
Forest plot for meta-analysis of household pets prevalence values. (TIF)
Data
Prevalence of Campylobacter in Household Pets from Literature Review. (DOCX)
Data
Forest plot for meta-analysis of household pets revised prevalence values. (TIF)
Data
Prevalence of Campylobacter in Petting Zoo Animals from Literature Review. (DOCX)
Data
Household Pets Search Strings. (DOCX)
Data
Forest plot for meta-analysis of petting zoo animal prevalence values. (TIF)
Data
Petting Zoo Animals Search Strings. (DOCX)
Article
Full-text available
Background: The Foodborne Disease Burden Epidemiology Reference Group (FERG) was established in 2007 by the World Health Organization to estimate the global burden of foodborne diseases (FBDs). This paper describes the methodological framework developed by FERG's Computational Task Force to transform epidemiological information into FBD burden est...
Article
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Estimates of the economic costs associated with foodborne disease are important to inform public health decision-making. In 2008, 57 cases of listeriosis and 24 deaths in Canada were linked to contaminated delicatessen meat from one meat processing plant. Costs associated with the cases (including medical costs, nonmedical costs, and productivity l...
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Full-text available
The estimated burden of endemic acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) annually in Canada is 20·5 million cases. Approximately 4 million of these cases are domestically acquired and foodborne, yet the proportion of waterborne cases is unknown. A number of randomized controlled trials have been completed to estimate the influence of tap water from mun...
Article
Full-text available
Waterborne illness related to the consumption of contaminated or inadequately treated water is a global public health concern. Although the magnitude of drinking water-related illnesses in developed countries is lower than that observed in developing regions of the world, drinking water is still responsible for a proportion of all cases of acute ga...
Article
Full-text available
Foodborne illness estimates help to set food safety priorities and create public health policies. The Public Health Agency of Canada estimates that 4 million episodes of foodborne illness occur each year in Canada due to 30 known pathogens and unspecified agents. The main objective of this study was to estimate the number of domestically acquired f...
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Full-text available
The incidence of self-reported acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) in Rigolet, Nunatsiavut, and Iqaluit, Nunavut, is higher than reported elsewhere in Canada; as such, understanding AGI-related healthcare use is important for healthcare provision, public health practice and surveillance of AGI. This study described symptoms, severity and duration...
Article
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Enteric viruses including norovirus and rotavirus are leading causes of gastroenteritis in Canada. However, only a small number of clinical cases are actually tested for these pathogens leading to systematic underestimation of attributed hospitalizations in administrative databases. The objective of this analysis was to estimate the number of hospi...
Article
Summary Food- and waterborne disease is thought to be high in some Canadian Indigenous communities; however, the burden of acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) is not well understood due to limited availability and quality of surveillance data. This study estimated the burden of community-level self-reported AGI in the Inuit communities of Rigolet,...
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Full-text available
Objectives: Enteric illness contributes to a significant burden of illness in Canada and globally. Understanding sources of illness is a critical step in identifying and preventing risks to human health. Expert elicitation is a powerful tool, used previously, to elicit information about enteric illness source attribution where data are difficult or...
Article
Full-text available
Expert elicitation is a useful tool to explore uncertainty and answer questions where data are expensive or difficult to obtain. It has been used across a variety of disciplines and represents an important method for estimating source attribution for enteric illness. A systematic review was undertaken to explore published expert elicitation studies...
Article
Enteric illness associated with foodborne and waterborne disease is thought to be common in some Canadian Indigenous communities. This study aimed to understand the lived experience of acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI), including symptoms and severity, perceived causes, and healthcare seeking behaviors of AGI in the small Inuit community of Rigo...
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Full-text available
Understanding of chronic sequelae development after Campylobacter infection is limited. The objective of the study was to determine via systematic review and meta-analysis the proportion of Campylobacter cases that develop chronic sequelae. A systematic review of English language articles published prior to July 2011 located using Pubmed, Agricola,...
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A stochastic model was used to estimate the number of human cases of ceftiofur-resistant Salmonella enterica serovar Heidelberg in Québec and Ontario attributable to chicken consumption and excess cases attributable to human prior antimicrobial consumption. The annual mean incidence of S. Heidelberg (Québec/Ontario) decreased from 70/62 cases per 1...
Article
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Abstract Nontyphoidal Salmonella spp. are one of the most common causes of bacterial foodborne illness. Variability in cost inventories and study methodologies limits the possibility of meaningfully interpreting and comparing cost-of-illness (COI) estimates, reducing their usefulness. However, little is known about the relative effect these factors...
Article
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Background Governments require high-quality scientific evidence to prioritize resource allocation and the cost-of-illness (COI) methodology is one technique used to estimate the economic burden of a disease. However, variable cost inventories make it difficult to interpret and compare costs across multiple studies. Methods A scoping review was con...
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Full-text available
The true incidence of endemic acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) attributable to drinking water in Canada is unknown. Using a systematic review framework, the literature was evaluated to identify methods used to attribute AGI to drinking water. Several strategies have been suggested or applied to quantify AGI attributable to drinking water at a n...
Article
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Up to 150 million North Americans currently use a groundwater system as their principal drinking water source. These systems are a potential source of exposure to enteric pathogens, contributing to the burden of waterborne disease. Waterborne disease outbreaks have been associated with US and Canadian groundwater systems over the past two decades....
Article
Full-text available
Understanding consumers' food safety practices is helpful in reducing food-borne illness. A systematic literature search was conducted to establish a baseline of consumer food safety practices in Canada, identify research gaps and make recommendations for future research. To date, this is the first study examining Canadian populations which gathers...
Article
Objective: This was a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the proportion of Escherichia coli O157 cases that develop chronic sequelae. Data sources: We conducted a systematic review of articles published prior to July 2011 in Pubmed, Agricola, CabDirect, or Food Safety and Technology Abstracts. Study selection: Studies were select...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Estimates of foodborne illness are important for setting food safety priorities and making public health policies. The objective of this analysis is to estimate domestically acquired, foodborne illness in Canada, while identifying data gaps and areas for further research. Estimates of illness due to 30 pathogens and unspecified agents were...
Article
Full-text available
Background Lack of access to safe and secure water is an international issue recognized by the United Nations. To address this problem, the One Million Cisterns Project was initiated in 2001 in Brazil’s semi-arid region to provide a sustainable source of water to households. The objectives of this study were to determine the 30-day period prevalenc...
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The purpose of this study was to determine the magnitude and distribution of acute gastrointestinal illness (GI) in the Chilean population, describe its burden and presentation, identify risk factors associated with GI and assess the differences between a 7-day, 15-day and a 30-day recall period in the population-based burden of illness study desig...
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This study evaluated the magnitude and distribution of acute gastrointestinal illness (GI) in Gálvez, Argentina, and assessed the outcome of a seven-day versus 30-day recall period in survey methodology. A cross-sectional population survey, with either a seven-day or a 30-day retrospective recall period, was conducted through door-to-door visits to...
Article
The costs associated with gastrointestinal infection (GI) in the province of British Columbia, Canada, were estimated using data from a population-based survey in three health service delivery areas, namely Vancouver, East Kootenay and Northern Interior. The number of cases of disease, consequent expenditure of resources and associated economic cos...
Article
The National Studies on Acute Gastrointestinal Illness (NSAGI) initiative was designed to generate baseline period prevalence rates of self-reported AGI in communities across Canada, assess the burden associated with AGI, and quantify the under-reporting of AGI in Canada's national enteric disease reporting systems. Methods utilized included popula...
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Under-reporting of infectious gastrointestinal illness (IGI) in British Columbia, Canada was calculated using simulation modelling, accounting for the uncertainty and variability of input parameters. Factors affecting under-reporting were assessed during a cross-sectional randomized telephone survey. For every case of IGI reported to the province,...
Article
A cross-sectional telephone survey was performed in the province of British Columbia, Canada, to investigate drinking water consumption patterns and their associations with various demographic characteristics and acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI). Water consumption included plain water and water used in the preparation of cold beverages. The med...
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To estimate the annual number of cases of illness due to verotoxigenic Escherichia coli (VTEC), Salmonella and Campylobacter in the Canadian population, using data from the National Notifiable Disease registry (NND), estimates of under-reporting derived from several National Studies on Acute Gastrointestinal Illness, and the literature. For each of...
Article
Recent outbreaks of Escherichia coli O157:H7, Campylobacter, and Cryptosporidium have heightened awareness of risks associated with contaminated water supply. The objectives of this research were to describe the incidence and distribution of waterborne disease outbreaks in Canada in relation to preceding weather conditions and to test the associati...
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Full-text available
In developed countries, gastrointestinal illness (GI) is typically mild and self-limiting, however, it has considerable economic impact due to high morbidity. The magnitude and distribution of acute GI in British Columbia (BC), Canada was evaluated via a cross-sectional telephone survey of 4,612 randomly selected residents, conducted from June 2002...
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Full-text available
This project addresses two important issues relevant to the health of Canadians: the risk of waterborne illness and the health impacts of global climate change. The Canadian health burden from waterborne illness is unknown, although it presumably accounts for a significant proportion of enteric illness. Recently, large outbreaks with severe consequ...

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