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Food Safety Programs


NEHA’s Food Safety Programs are dedicated to educating food safety and environmental health professionals.  These programs include:

NEHA Food Safety Training – One objective of NEHA is to improve the quality of food safety training in the U.S. by establishing a nationwide network of certified food safety trainers and by providing accurate and effective learning materials to trainers, managers, and employees in the food service industry. In supporting our mission, “to advance the environmental health and protection professional for the purpose of providing a healthful environment for all,” NEHA continually reviews existing educational resources and explores new training opportunities for all environmental health professionals.

Epi-Ready Team Training – NEHA, in cooperation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), offers a holistic face-to-face training opportunity to provide up-to-date foodborne disease outbreak investigation and surveillance training to public and private sector environmental health professionals as well as other professionals that have collaborated in conducting foodborne disease outbreak investigations.

Food-Safe Schools – NEHA, in cooperation with CDC, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other partner organizations, helps build the capacity of health and education departments to work within coordinated school health programs to prevent foodborne illnesses. The goals of this program are to build a framework of national partnerships, make organizations aware of the numerous resources that exist nationwide, and promote and distribute the Food-Safe Schools Action Guide toolkit.

Industry: Foodborne Illness Investigation Training (I-FIIT) – Due to the success of NEHA’s Epi-Ready Team Training workshop, we are currently in the development phase of creating a similar one day face-to-face course designed for those in industry at the retail food service, food stores and restaurant level. The purpose of the Industry-Foodborne Illness Investigation Training (I-FIIT) is for industry to establish and implement control measures based on model practices that rapidly and effectively prevent further transmission of illness in response to a foodborne disease incident. This will be accomplished by bringing together retail food service representatives, government food safety officials and other involved personnel to improve foodborne disease outbreak response by identifying industry and regulatory roles and responsibilities during a foodborne disease incident.

In addition to the above programs, NEHA continually seeks potential funding sources and collaborations for food safety education, outreach, and research—for example, NEHA is currently researching funding opportunities on ethnic food safety. NEHA also receives regular funding for food safety education through CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s conference support grant programs.


New! NEHA's Assessment of Foodborne Illness Outbreak Response and Investigation Capacity in U.S. Environmental Health Food Safety Regulatory Programs


NEHA was asked by members of CIFOR to conduct an assessment of the capacity of local and state agencies to undertake foodborne illness outbreak investigation and response. Of concern were the potential impacts of ongoing budget reductions on staffing, training, outbreak response, control, and prevention activities, as well as the current status of inter-agency cooperation to share resources. The assessment findings reveal a significant overall reduction in foodborne illness program capacity.

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NEHA’s Environmental Health Regulatory Food Safety Program Capacity Assessment

NEHA and AFDO were asked to conduct an environmental health (EH) regulatory food safety program capacity assessment by CIFOR. CIFOR members are interested in knowing what impacts budget cuts may be having on the capacity of local and state regulatory food safety programs—and specifically on those programs that conduct environmental investigations during foodborne disease outbreaks. This assessment was intended for EH and regulatory food safety managers and directors who oversee regulatory food safety programs within local, tribal, and state departments that conduct environmental investigations during foodborne disease outbreaks. Because of the urgency to have basic information quickly, an initial assessment was created using Zoomerang. The assessment was both anecdotal and qualitative and addressed EH foodborne illness investigation capacity issues. NEHA, AFDO, and NACCHO disseminated the assessment to EH and food safety managers and directors. The assessment was launched March 24, 2011, and closed April 8, 2011. The below reports are a summary and the complete results of the feedback received through the assessment. For more information, please contact Vanessa De Arman, Project Coordinator, Research and Development, at vdearman@neha.org or at 303-756-9090, ext. 311.

Environmental Health Regulatory Food Safety Program Capacity Assessment: Initial Assessment Results Summary


CIFOR Releases Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response


The Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response (CIFOR)  has released the Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response. This document is the result of an extensive development and review process involving all key federal agencies and Non-Government Organizations (NGO's) that represent food safety professionals. NEHA is pleased to have played a role in this process representing state and local environmental health food safety professionals. The document provides detailed information and recommendations for each step in a foodborne illness outbreak investigation. It will provide environmental health professionals with comprehensive information, action items, resources and best practices models to improve detection and response.

Press Release  

DOWNLOAD GUIDELINES FOR FOODBORNE DISEASE OUTBREAK RESPONSE


New! CIFOR’s Foodborne Illness Response Guidelines for Owners, Operators and Managers of Food Establishments (CIFOR Industry Guidelines)


Another foodborne illness outbreak response resource is now available, the CIFOR Industry Guidelines. The guidelines were developed as voluntary guidance for owners, operators, and managers of retail food establishments (“Industry”) to help outline, clarify, and explain Industry’s recommended role in a foodborne illness outbreak investigation. By using the CIFOR Industry Guidelines and its tools, Industry can take an active and educated role in outbreak response and investigation thereby reducing negative health impact to the public and negative economic impact to their businesses.

DOWNLOAD INDUSTRY GUIDELINES


NEHA Joins with MindLeaders to Provide New Food Safety Training Programs


MindLeaders, Inc. and the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) have announced a cooperative agreement that provides for the development and distribution of new online and instructor led food safety training programs. 


Handwashing on Trial: Avoiding a Guilty Verdict


This video of a mock trial based on a fictitious outbreak is from NEHA's 2007 Annual Education Conference & Exhibition in Atlantic City, NJ.  See an educational video and an example of the great opportunities available at our conferences!


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