Department of Health

Oversight of Food Protection Programs

The Department of Health oversees activities that are intended to protect the public against foodborne diseases. These activities, which include inspections of food service establishments and the investigating and reporting of suspected outbreaks of foodborne diseases, are performed by local (county, district and New York City) health departments. We examined the Department's oversight of these activities and found that a number of improvements are needed. For example, even though local health departments are required to submit quarterly reports about their inspection activities, most of the reports for 1998 and 1999 were submitted late or not at all. We also found that local inspectors did not always attend required training sessions, and local health departments did inspect certain high-risk establishments as often as required. We also identified weaknesses in local practices for investigating suspected outbreaks of foodborne diseases.

For a complete copy of Report 99-S-47 click here.
For a copy of the 90-day response click here.
For a copy of the associated follow-up report click here.