In the summer of 2019, there was an outbreak of listeriosis in England, during which seven patients died after eating hospital sandwiches contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Following this, an independent review of NHS hospital food in England was announced by UK Government Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock.
On 26 October 2020, the final report of the review panel was published, detailing a number of recommendations to improve food safety in hospitals in England.
The recommendations include:
- ensuring there are dedicated food safety specialists in each NHS trust
- the implementation of robust food safety management systems by hospitals
- a compulsory function to report concerns across the entire hospital food chain
To coincide with the publication of the report, the Food Standards Authority (FSA) has published the evidence package it provided to inform the review panel’s discussions on food safety. The evidence sets out key findings from detailed reviews on previous outbreaks of foodborne illness in hospitals, and outlines the FSA’s advice on actions that should be taken to enhance food safety.
Source: FSA, 26 October 2020