The current Health Protection Scotland Weekly Report contains a link to the Godstone Inquiry website, which in turn has a link to the report. The HPS Current Note lists the key recommendations from the report, so it’s useful as a quick starter. http://www.documents.hps.scot.nhs.uk/ewr/pdf2010/1024.pdf
The last paragraph of the Note also links to the HPS “Simple Precautions” leaflet webpage http://www.hps.scot.nhs.uk/giz/guidelinedetail.aspx?id=38604 . This enables access to various farm-related guidance documents – i.e. they are all collected in one place.
The Purpose of the Independent Investigation
In August and September 2009 an outbreak of E. coli O157 led to severe illness in a number of visitors to Godstone Farm in Surrey. The Health Protection Agency established an independent investigation of the outbreak, the factors that contributed to it and its subsequent handling. The purpose of the investigation was to make recommendations to reduce the risk of those who visit Open Farms contracting E. coli O157 and to improve the health protection response to future outbreaks of E. coli O157 infection. In the context of the investigation, an ‘Open’ Farm is defined as one that invites members of the public to visit and facilitates direct contact with the animals. The report covers a wide range of issues and will be of interest to Environmental Health Officers and anyone with an interest in the control of infection. While the report covers an outbreak in England, it addresses many issues that are relevant to Scotland. HPS has welcomed the detailed consideration given to this matter by the independent investigation.The Scottish Government Public Health and Wellbeing Directorate has published a leaflet ‘Shedding light on E coli o157 – What you need to know’. This leaflet is aimed at raising awareness of the risk of infection via animal or environmental contact. It suggests precautions to take to reduce the risk. It is available at http://www.scotland.gov.uk/publications/2005/03/20839/54388