May ServSafe Class in Cobb County

Cobb & Douglas Public Health has added an additional ServSafe course to help meet the ongoing demand for classes.  It will be presented Tuesday and Wednesday, May 11-12th from 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM at the Marietta Health Center, 1738 County Services Pkwy, Marietta, GA 30008 in the 2nd Floor Training Room of Building B.  If you would like to reserve a seat in the class, please submit your registration form as soon as possible due to limited seating capacity.

The Six Still Exist!

Salmonella typhi

By Eboni Waters, EHS3

We understand these times have been chaotic and difficult as we continue to work toward eliminating the spread of COVID-19. During this time, we should continue to monitor for symptoms of COVID 19 along with monitoring for symptoms of foodborne illness.  Management as well as food workers should know the employee health reporting requirements.

Let’s review!

The Big Six Illnesses Reportable by the Person-in-Charge to the Health Department:

Hepatitis A

Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC)

Norovirus

Shigella spp.

Salmonella Typhi

Nontyphoidal Salmonella.

Five Reportable Symptoms:

  • Jaundice – a yellowing of the skin or eyes
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Infected wounds
  • Sore throat with fever

Lastly, ensure you report any employees diagnosed with one of the Big Six illnesses to your local health department.

To assist food service operators in managing an effective employee health policy, the Georgia Department of Public Health offers the following resources:

Employee Health RED Book (English)

Employee Health RED Book (Spanish)

Employee Health RED Book (Simplified Chinese)

NOW AVAILABLE: CDPH COVID-19 Vaccination Newsletter

To stay current on the availability of the COVID-19 vaccine in our district, please visit the “COVID Vaccine” page of the Cobb & Douglas Public Health website to sign up for our vaccine newsletter.  This will be the best way to make sure you are notified when food service workers and other qualifying groups become eligible to receive the vaccine. This page also provides additional information and resources related to the COVID-19 vaccine that can be shared with your staff.

While the public health focus is shifting to vaccinations, free COVID-19 testing is still available by registering at the following link:

http://www.cdphcovid19testing.org/

Links to all of CDPH’s resources related to COVID-19 can be found on our Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) webpage.

Infographic of Updated COVID-19 Quarantine Guidance

If you have been a close contact of someone that has been diagnosed with COVID-19, there are now three quarantine options that may be utilized to protect those around you from potential coronavirus exposure. The full details of these options can be found here, but the graphic above may be a more convenient reference.

Please keep in mind, that these quarantine options are only available to close contacts that are not exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19. If you are experiencing symptoms of this illness, it is critical that you isolate yourself and follow current isolation guidelines.

And if you think you may have COVID-19, free testing is available at many convenient testing sites across the state. You may register for a free test here:

https://covid19.dph.ga.gov/en-US/

Free “Winter Break” Meal Kits for Children 18 and Under

Marietta City Schools has been authorized to by the U. S. Department of Agriculture to provide FREE meals to keep children fed during the first week of Winter Break.  ANYONE 18 and under is eligible to receive a 7-Day Meal Kit [which includes 7 breakfasts and 7 lunches] by pre-ordering by noon Wednesday, December 16th.  Meals will be available for pick-up on Friday between 8 AM and 1 PM at Marietta High School (1171 Whitlock Avenue) and Marietta Sixth Grade Academy (340 Aviation Rd).  The links to pre-order the 7-Day Meal Kits are:

English: https://t.co/D2W8N7nBT2

Spanish: https://t.co/Np82HPdWMD

Meal Kit Flyer (English and Spanish)

Please share this opportunity with anyone that may benefit.

Updated COVID-19 Return to Work and Quarantine Guidance

The public health Return to Work Guidance and the Quarantine Guidance have both been updated to reflect the new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention changes for close contacts. This includes a change to the quarantine period for those that do not live in congregate settings [such as group homes, dormitories, detention centers, etc.] to 7 days (with a negative PCR or antigen test collected on or after Day 5 AND asymptomatic) OR 10 days (without a test AND asymptomatic).  As always, all close contacts should monitor their symptoms for the 14 day period following exposure.  If symptoms develop, the close contact MUST self-isolate immediately.  Testing is still available for all symptomatic individuals.

Responding to a Covid-19 Diagnosis in a Food Service Facility

Cobb County remains among the top 5 counties in Georgia in regard to the number of Covid-19 cases identified.  This number is of increased concern when considering the close proximity of food service workers with one another and with their customers.  The Contact Tracing Team of Cobb & Douglas Public Health has produced an infographic that food service operators may print for use in their facilities.  The poster emphasizes the importance of contact tracing when a worker has been diagnosed with Covid-19 or has been in close contact with someone who has been.  This includes the importance of reporting food worker cases to the health department and the protocol to be followed when workers are diagnosed. 

Also, keep in mind that free Covid-19 testing is available at our Cobb and Douglas drive-thru testing sites after completing the online registration form.  If a testing site in another Georgia county is more convenient, you may also request an appointment for the closest site via the same online registration link.   

Preparing for Holiday Celebrations with COVID-19 Precautions in Mind

Most are looking forward to the holidays bringing a sense of positive change from what we’ve experienced over the past several months.  As plans are being made, it is still important to not only keep our “food” safe during festivities, but for us to be “COVID” safe as well.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has provided several good resources to assist with preparations for the holidays with Covid-19 in mind to help keep our friends and families safe.

Let’s get ready for fun—and safe—holidays!

Limited Seats Still Available for Our December ServSafe Class

Free image/jpeg, Resolution: 3065x2043, File size: 1.25Mb, Classroom School table

Cobb & Douglas Public Health is presenting an in-person ServSafe class on December 9-10 from 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM.  The class will be located at the Marietta Health Center, Building B, 1738 County Services Pkwy, Marietta, GA 30008 in the 2nd Floor Training Room.  We will be taking COVID-19 precautions, which will include face coverings and social distancing for students and instructors.  The deadline for pre-registration is November 15th.

Feel free to share this information and course registration form with those you feel may be interested.

Updated Food Service Regulations and COVID-19 Guidance

The Georgia Department of Public Health has recently updated the Rules and Regulations for Food Service as well as their COVID-19 Guidance for Restaurant and Bars

The most recent change to the Food Service rules applies to the definition of a “food service establishment” which now exempts nonprofit temporary food service that operate for 120 hours or less from having to have a food service permit from Public Health.  [Those permits will now be issued by the municipal/county government of jurisdiction].

The latest COVID-19 guidance document reflects the CDC’s change regarding when a worker diagnosed with COVID-19 may return to work.  The timeframe has decreased from 3 days fever-free without the aid of fever reducing medicine to just 24 hours. 

Check out our Environmental Health COVID-19 guidance page to access more resources and guidance to assist you during these times.