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Keeping restaurants safe during the COVID-19 outbreak

Posted at 10:50 PM, Apr 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-07 01:50:45-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — "We're still out there, as best as we can, getting those inspections done."

In Pima County, Loni Anderson is the Director of Consumer Health and Food Safety.

With social distancing orders in place, her role and that of her inspectors matters just as much as ever.

"We're busy, fielding a lot of calls from...the public."

Anderson said inspectors continue to check in on restaurants across the county, at fewer than before though, some, she said, aren't able to deliver so they're just not open.

She did offer one assurance to the public during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"There shouldn't be any major concerns with the food that the consumers are bringing home."

She explained to KGUN9 the process by which her inspectors ensure restaurants are staying above the standard to serve food in Pima County.

"Proper hand washing, hygiene, food being cooked to the proper temperature, employees are not working while they're ill, they are limiting their hand contact with ready to eat food whether they're using gloves or some type of utensils to prevent that bare-hand contact contamination."

No change in their usual process, Anderson said, just more of an emphasis on educating restaurant staff how to prepare and serve food safely.