Authors: Douglas Main
Yelp and its user reviews help discerning diners find a good spot to eat, but public health officials in New York City have now used the online guide for another purpose--to identify three previously unidentified outbreaks of foodborne illness. In the project, officials from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) used a program to sort through some 294,000 reviews, posted between July 2012 and March 2013. They looked for complaints that might signal something gone awry with the food, such as the words "“sick," "“vomit," "“diarrhea," or "“food poisoning"....
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