We often speak to food service operators about having effective plans in place for responding to events involving vomit and/or diarrhea in their establishments.  We were recently reminded by the Georgia Department of Public Health’s Environmental Health Office of the current code requirements in this  area:  

“Chapter 511-6-1 requires operators to have procedures in place for responding to vomiting/diarrheal accidents [511-6-1-.03(6)] in the food service establishment and IF PRESENT playground equipment and associated areas, there needs to be a plan in place for operators to follow when responding to vomiting and diarrheal events there as well [511-6-1-.07(5)(b)3].”  

Please don’t forget that if establishments have playground equipment, there should be an approved plan for responding to such events if they occur there as well.  The disinfectants used for such purposes are to be effective against Norovirus.  Chlorine is a disinfectant that is approved to be used in response to an event, however, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a list of others approved for use in response plans.  Click this link for an EPA list of effective disinfectants or go to the EPA’s website for more information.  Also, click here for an example of a response plan provided by the Centers for Disease Control.





Do you have a CFSM?

With very few exceptions, each food service establishment is required to have a certified food safety manager (CFSM) that is actively engaged in overseeing the application of safe food handling and operations in their respective facility. Food safety exams accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) meet the CFSM requirements of the Georgia Food Service Rules and Regulations Chapter 511-6-1.  The following providers are ANSI accredited: ServSafe, National Registry of Food Safety Professionals, Prometric, Learn2Serve and State Food Safety (the most recently accredited provider)

Cobb & Douglas Public Health offers the ServSafe course.  Registration has closed for Cobb’s July course, however, registration is still being accepted for the Douglas class scheduled for August 29-30.  Registration forms and links to other CFSM providers are found on our website at .


Our next Food Safety Partnership Panel will focus on the Source of Food.  If you are an operator of a food service establishment and would like to represent the food industry on this panel, please contact Cobb & Douglas Public Health’s Food Program Manager, Karen Gulley, at 678-385-5066 or via email at .  This panel episode is scheduled to be recorded on Monday, July 24th at 2:00 PM at the Douglas County Courthouse.

Did you forget to clean something???

By Casey Saenz, EHS3

During a recent food service inspection, I was examining the ice machine (which is a routine part of an inspection) and happened to notice a small buildup of black mold on the machine’s interior panel.  From past experience, I know that if there is a small amount of mold where I can easily see it, then there’s a good chance that there will be a much bigger beast lurking further inside the ice machine.  To better assess my concerns, I used the camera on my cell phone to take a picture of the upper interior area where the ice drops.  Lo and behold….

Ice machine

This 4-point violation was marked under item number 4-2B (Food-contact surfaces: cleaned & sanitized) on the food service inspection form.

There have been gastrointestinal illness outbreaks from pathogens, such as Norovirus, that have been traced back to the consumption of contaminated ice.  People sometimes forget that ice is a food, just like the ones that are listed on a restaurant’s menu, that can become contaminated with disease causing microorganisms from a contaminated surface or someone’s unwashed hands.  This photo serves as a great reminder to always clean your food contact surfaces on a regular basis, especially the ones that are not very visible!


Angie Davis Is Moving On…

Angie Davis

Many of you receiving our blog posts have worked with– or are familiar with–Angie Davis of our Cobb Environmental Health office.  We wanted you to know that, effective May 1st, she will become the new Director of Environmental Health for Clayton County.   We wish her much success as she moves on to the next level of her career.  Her 16 years plus service with the Cobb & Douglas health district has been invaluable. 

Looking for a CFSM Class?

Our March ServSafe class is full; however, we will be presenting another class next month in partnership with the Cobb County Extension Service on April 18-19 in the Cobb Extension Service Training Room (678 South Cobb Drive, Marietta, GA 30060).  Please see our Certified Food Safety Manager Courses page for the registration form for this class. Additional CFSM classes being offered by Cobb & Douglas Public Health, as well as other resources for CFSM training can also be found on this page.

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