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DHEC conducting food safety checks online

Staff Report //April 13, 2020//

DHEC conducting food safety checks online

Staff Report //April 13, 2020//

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The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control is conducting food safety checks virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic.

DHEC inspectors are using a variety of videoconferencing services to evaluate retail food operations statewide, allowing the agency to continue monitoring food safety while adhering to social distancing measures.

“Through our partnership with the restaurant industry, this creative approach allows us to stay connected with these essential businesses while we continue our oversight of food safety compliance,” Myra Reece, DHEC director of environmental affairs, said in a news release.

DHEC can also use the technology to perform virtual preoperational inspections for owners opening a new restaurant, according to the release.

During the virtual checks, DHEC staff can discuss current operational challenges and address any concerns restaurant operators may have. Operators will receive a completed DHEC Food Safety Check via email, and the report will be posted on the S.C. Food Grades website.

“We applaud DHEC on their continuing, strong commitment to keeping our restaurants safe for consumers,” said John Durst, president and CEO of the S.C. Restaurant and Lodging Association. “This need exists more now than it has in any other emergency we have faced together. We strongly encourage food service establishments across the state to contact DHEC and set up a virtual visit.”

To schedule a virtual food safety check, contact a regional DHEC office.