It is very important to protect food from harmful bacteria that could be spread by other activities in the care home. Older people may be more likely to suffer from food poisoning and become ill because ageing weakens the immune system’s ability to fight infection. So it is important to take extra care when dealing with food intended for people in residential care. This supplement is for small residential care homes that prepare and cook food for people in either long-term or short-term residential care. It is not intended for use in nursing homes.
The safe methods in this supplement cover the following specific food safety issues found in care homes:
• Extra care: protecting food
• Gift food
These will help you to reduce the spread of harmful bacteria between the rest of the care home and the kitchen. You will need to use this supplement together with the Safer food, better business for caterers pack and not on its own.
If you have completed the SFBB caterers pack you will already be familiar with the safe methods and how to complete them. Work through the supplement and complete the relevant safe methods and the new safe method completion record. Then insert the safe methods into the appropriate colour-coded section of the pack. When you have completed all the sections, make sure you and your staff (this means anyone working with food in a care home setting): • follow the safe methods all the time • fill in the diary every day Remember, the safe methods in the supplement will not provide a food safety management system by themselves. The supplement should be used alongside your caterers pack.
As part of your registration as a care home provider, you will need to comply with the national minimum standards (NMS). You can get further information on the NMS from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) or the social services at your local authority. All care homes are also required to have an infection control policy. For further advice you can refer to the Department of Health’s ‘Infection control guidance for care homes’.
Where can I get more information ?
For information about Listeria, which is a type of bacteria that can cause serious problems for the elderly, see: www.food.gov.uk/science/microbiology/listeria More information on registering as a care home provider can be found at: www.cqc.org.uk/ Information on infection control within care homes is available at: www.dh.gov.uk/publications
The pack is available to download from the Food Standards Agency website at: www.food.gov.uk/business-industry/ caterers/sfbb/sfbbcaterers/