Following an independent review of hospital food in 2020, the NHS has published new national standards for healthcare food and drink that all NHS organisations will be legally required to meet as part of their NHS standard contracts.
The new standards cover eight key areas including nutrition, food safety, staff training and reduction of food waste.
The importance of food allergies has been recognised and included in the new standards and there is now a requirement that all staff who may come into contact with food receive food allergy training.
The standard states:-
‘Everyone involved in handling food should receive appropriate food safety training, including ‘non-catering’ staff such as nurses or porters who may come into contact with food…………
……….Food service staff and all others involved in preparing and serving food must undertake training in food allergy and the importance of avoiding cross-contamination with other foods.’
The new standards also require that organisations have a food allergy policy.
Simon Williams, Chief Executive of Anaphylaxis UK said:
“We are really pleased to see that food allergy awareness has been included in the training and safety requirements of these new healthcare food and drink standards. Being in hospital can be especially difficult for those living with food allergies and it is vital that hospital staff looking after patients with food allergies have the essential food allergy knowledge and training in order to keep them safe during their stay.”
Anaphylaxis UK offers an online training course for Hospital Ward staff which is suitable for nurses, healthcare assistants, ward managers, staff educators, directors of nursing, dietitians and anyone else involved in patient care on the ward.
Visit www.allergywise.org.uk for more information.
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