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One Health Harmful Algal Bloom System (OHHABS) multistatereporting guidance
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  • Description:
    This document provides guidance for reporting a harmful algal bloom (HAB) when a bloom impacts the water quality in more than one state or when exposures to the same HAB or HAB toxins occur in more than one state. The terms below will be used in this document for reporting in the One Health Harmful Algal Bloom System (OHHABS):

    • “HAB event” will be used to describe a HAB or HAB toxins in a water source (e.g., HAB toxins in a lake)

    • “multistate HAB event” will describe a single HAB event that impacts the water quality of more than one state (e.g., in a body of water that crosses state borders) and has no associated cases of illnesses

    • “multistate HAB exposure” will describe two or more HAB-associated cases of illness (human or animal) exposed to the same source in more than one state (e.g., HAB event that crosses state borders, contaminated food item consumed in more than one state)

    This guidance has been developed with consideration of multistate outbreak reporting in the National Outbreak Reporting System (NORS). Where possible, OHHABS multistate reporting processes follow or have been adapted from NORS multistate reporting processes. An OHHABS multistate HAB exposure that includes multiple human cases of illness may also meet the definition of a NORS multistate exposure outbreak. Please report HAB-associated waterborne and foodborne outbreaks (≥ two human cases of illness) in NORS. Please report HAB events and single cases of human or animal HAB-associated illness in OHHABS.

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