Friday, November 09, 2007

Food Inspections in District

The Health Dept. has now placed its site inspections online here. The good news is that you can check out local eatiers, caterers, shops offering food, school cafes, nursing homes, even senior centers. The bad news is that there are few reports posted.

The inspections go back to Jan. 07 (Sept. 06 for most schools). I've blogged on the lack of food inspectors before. On this site you can plug in your town or zip & receive full reports (or not). You can click on the actual report & view when corrections were made.

In a previous entry, I blogged on a report from the D.C. "Center for Science in the Public Interest" (CSPI), a non-profit organization with a report out, "Making The Grade." This report evaluates the conditions existing in our public school cafeterias.

In the frequency of school food service reports, Rhode Island scored worst. In access to inspection reports, Rhode Island scored worst (it's SUPPOSED to be 2x/yr. but often is not). On a grade point score of 100, Rhode Island received a failing 54 score. Some violations included cross-contamination of clean and dirty utensils, improper holding temperatures, and the presence of vermin.

Schools are required by federal mandates to conduct these food facility audits & now instead of relying on State inspections, may hire third party auditors. Unfortunately these reports are not available, only the violations are listed with no date of correction.

Be careful in the school search. Many Middletown schools (and some restaurants) are listed in the 02840 zip. They certainly fared worse in their inspections than Tiverton schools & most local eateries. Why? And sometimes the violations continued. I found no reports for Little Compton. The zip code & name searches did NOT work. I found no reports for the Middletown Senior Center or any other in the district. Why not??? All the nursing homes filed, but nothing for privately funded Blenheim.

This new site post the reports online, but sadly, posting doesn't solve the problem of non-inspections or poor quality. In Florida, eateries are inspected twice/yr. and one surprise inspection. One the Health website I could not find any indication of any regs regarding this & I would appreciate the info if a reader has it.
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