i Hospital Food Safety An Assessment of the Hygienic and Food Handling Practices in Selected Hospitals in Addis Ababa- Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


The purpose of this study was to assess the status of food hygiene and food safety issues and practices in some selected hospitals in Addis Ababa- Ethiopia and provide a baseline data for implementing HACCP in hospital food services. In addition, knowledge and practice of food handlers with regard to food hygiene in hospitals was assessed, gaps in hospital food safety and hygiene was identified and microbial analysis of food was conducted. The assessment and observation checklist for comparing standards of GHP and GKP has uncovered some gaps regarding the status of the premises, status and storage of equipments, some aspects of personal hygiene and sanitation and pest control. The common unsatisfactory scores include having unclean floors, walls and ceilings, insect infestation and poor ventilation, poor storage of utensils, not using appropriate tools by food handlers, improper covering of refuse receptacle and absence of a hand wash basins near the toilets. The questionnaire based assessment has provided insight into inadequacies in the general food service staff knowledge with regard to food hygiene principles as 86.8% were not aware of the correct refrigerator temperature, 78.9% of them thought that chilling and freezing eliminates harmful germs in food. In addition to that, 71.1% of them were unaware of the best way to wash fresh fruits and vegetables to keep them free from food poisoning microorganisms. On the other hand, better results were obtained for self-reported food hygiene practices and control measures. High scores were obtained for knowledge about food related microorganisms such as Vibrio cholera (89.5%), Salmonella (97.4%) and Hepatitis A (60.5%). Knowledge of C.botulinum and S.aureus was absent. A total of 45 samples (15 meat, 15 vegetable and 15 legume based sauces) were analyzed for Aerobic colony count, total coliforms, E. coli type I and CNS. Data from the microbiological analysis show that most of the samples were within the good/acceptable range but the incidence of fecal coliforms and E.coli indicate a poor food handling practice and/or cross-contamination during distribution or in the kitchen.A HACCP system has not been implemented in any of the studied hospitals and in view of the findings of this study it can be underlined the importance of a full implementation of the system



Food Security