Routine restaurant inspections and education of food handlers: recommendations based on critical appraisal of the literature and survey of Canadian jurisdictions on restaurant inspections and education of food handlers.
Inspection of restaurants and education of food handlers are two methods used by regulatory agencies to ensure food served in restaurants is safe to eat. The variation which exists in the implementation of these programs suggests that the programs' effectiveness is lacking or is not clear. Recommendations based on the Community Health Practice Guideline methodology, the results of a critical review of the literature, the results of a survey of practices, and expert opinion were developed. The recommendations include: continuation of routine inspections at a frequency of one to two inspections per year per restaurant and the continuation of education programs. The evidence on which these recommendations are based is scant and more research is needed to ensure programs are needed, effective and efficient.