Giardiasis is a common waterborne gastrointestinal illness. In 2007, a community giardiasis outbreak occurred in New Hampshire, USA. We conducted a cohort study to identify risk factors for giardiasis, and stool and environmental samples were analysed. Consuming tap water was significantly associated with illness (risk ratio 4·7, 95% confidence interval 1·5–14·4). Drinking-water samples were coliform-contaminated and a suspect Giardia cyst was identified in a home water filter. One well was coliform-contaminated, and testing indicated that it was potentially under the influence of surface water. The well was located 12·5 m from a Giardia-contaminated brook, although the genotype differed from clinical specimens. Local water regulations require well placement at least 15 m from surface water. This outbreak, which caused illness in 31 persons, represents the largest community drinking-water-associated giardiasis outbreak in the USA in 10 years. Adherence to well placement regulations might have prevented this outbreak.
(Accepted August 11 2009)
(Online publication September 15 2009)
c1 Author for correspondence: E. R. Daly, MPH, Communicable Disease Surveillance Section, New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services, 29 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH 03301-6504, USA. (Email: [email protected])