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Food Safety Program

Foodborne illness in the United States is estimated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to cause 48 million cases of illnesses, over 128,000 hospitalizations, and 3,000 deaths annually. Hospitalizations due to foodborne illnesses are estimated to cost over $3 billion dollars and lost productivity is estimated to cost between $20 billion and $40 billion each year. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates that foodborne illnesses are costing the United States economy more than $15.6 billion annually. NACCHO strives to support and work with local health departments to improve food safety and prevent foodborne illness. Click here to learn more about NACCHO's Food Safety Project.

In the Spotlight

Study of Retail Food Establishment Inspection Scoring and Grading Systems is a new NACCHO research brief that examines the way that LHDs use scores or grades to convey the results of their retail food establishment inspections. Through a cooperative agreement with the Food and Drug Administration, NACCHO conducted a surveyed local health departments to learn more about the prevalence of scoring and grading, the distribution of different types of scoring and grading systems, the relationship between systems and other food safety practices, and potential areas for further research.   More »


NACCHO is pleased to announce the selection of a fourth cohort of participants in its Retail Program Standards Mentorship Program. The peer mentorship program provides opportunities to learn, share experiences, and acquire tools and resources related to the FDA Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards (Retail Program Standards). NACCHO's program, now in its fourth year, pairs local health department practitioners who are experienced in applying the Retail Program Standards with those newly enrolled and looking for assistance, guidance, tools, resources, and recommendations for success. Participants will design plans for reaching program milestones, conduct self-assessments, develop improvement plans, and conduct verification audits, among other learning activities. Participants will begin the program in early January 2015 and will complete it at the end of August 2015. Visit the Preparedness Brief blog for more details and a full listing of cohort members.  More »

New CIFOR Publications

New! Second Edition of the CIFOR Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response
The Second Edition of the CIFOR Guidelines for Foodborne Disease Outbreak Response (CIFOR Guidelines) is now available. These guidelines incorporate many significant changes that have occurred in the foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak investigation framework since the first edition of the Guidelines was published in 2009. Examples of additions and changes include information about the Food Safety Modernization Act; new information about model practices in outbreak investigation and response; updated statistics, references and examples; and enhanced alignment between the Guidelines and the Toolkit. The Guidelines were developed by a broad range of foodborne disease experts from local, state and federal agencies to aid government agencies responsible for investigating, managing and preventing foodborne disease. Learn more.

New! Development of Target Ranges for Selected Performance Measures in the CIFOR Guidelines
Chapter 8 of the CIFOR Guidelines was developed for use by state and local public health agencies to evaluate the performance of their foodborne disease surveillance, outbreak investigation, and control programs. Standardized performance criteria and metrics promote a common understanding of the key elements of surveillance, outbreak investigation, and control activities, facilitate training of staff, and allow for the aggregation of data to evaluate program effectiveness and identify specific needs for improvement. The aim of the metrics project was to develop specific metrics and target ranges for 16 selected performance indicators in Chapter 8 of the Guidelines to help agencies demonstrate their public health performance and effectiveness for foodborne disease surveillance and outbreak control activities. The project outputs include an abridged version of the 16 metric and target ranges and the full project report which describes the methodologies used to develop the 16 metric and target ranges. Learn more.

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Join NACCHO's Food Safety Leaders' List

Are you a leader or champion for food safety? NACCHO is recruiting local health department staff interested in receiving emails on food safety news, policy updates, events, and call to action items. As a subscriber to the Food Safety Leaders' List, you will have the opportunity to provide input on NACCHO's food safety positions and advocacy efforts that helps shape policy across the nation at local health departments. To subscribe, please email with your email address, name, organization/agency, and position.