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Health & Wellbeing

How Crawley Council protects your plate

It’s Food Safety Week and this year Crawley Borough Council are focusing on what they do to protect your plate.

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Crawley Borough Council has a team of dedicated Environmental Health Officers whose job it is to inspect local food businesses to ensure hygiene standards are up to scratch.

More than 600 businesses inspected in Crawley received a food hygiene rating of 3 (generally satisfactory) or above under the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. The scheme covers businesses supplying or serving food direct to consumers such as restaurants, pubs, cafés, takeaways, food vans or stalls, canteens, hotels, supermarkets, schools, hospitals and care homes.

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The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme helps people choose where to shop for food and where to eat out by giving them clear information about the businesses’ hygiene standards. There are six hygiene ratings ranging from ‘0’ (urgent improvement required) at the bottom to ‘5’ (very good) at the top.

You can find all the information showing your favourite eatery’s hygiene rating at ratings.food.gov.uk

To make sure businesses maintain or improve upon their rating, the council’s Environmental Health Team carry out inspections ranging from every six months (high risk businesses) to three years (low risk businesses). The inspections are designed to assess how hygienic the premise is and how effective the food safety management systems are. The results are then used to calculate the food hygiene rating for the business.

Businesses are given green and black stickers for display at their premises and all ratings are published online, so people can make more informed choices about where to buy and eat food.

Cabinet Member for Economic and Environmental Services, Councillor Geraint Thomas, said:

“With a great range of eateries here in Crawley, many of our residents enjoy ditching the oven gloves for an evening and heading out for a meal and our dedicated team works hard to make sure that residents and visitors can enjoy their meal with peace of mind. “

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Community

Local volunteers drive GPs to essential home visits in Crawley

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Image: Dr Phoebe Danes and volunteer Chris Ball.

Local volunteers have stepped up to help drive clinicians to home visits during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The initiative was launched by local GP federation Alliance for Better Care, who have rented black cabs to provide essential transport for clinicians attending patients’ homes. 

The taxis, which have been adapted to make them easier to clean, are driven by volunteer drivers who have come forward via various community Facebook groups.

Thanks to the layout of the cab, drivers are completely separated from the clinician who is also afforded extra space in the cab to put on PPE and write up notes. 

Matt Cullis, practice manager at Leacroft Medical Practice said:

“Our surgery is still open to treat patients, however, home visits have become particularly important for those who are shielding and not wanting to leave their homes. This service saves us time and allows our doctors to travel to appointments in an environment that can be easily cleaned and has room to put on PPE.”

Alliance for Better Care is the GP federation for Crawley, Horsham, Mid-Sussex and East Surrey and so far the project has been rolled out at Leacroft Surgery in Crawley and throughout Burgess Hill, with plans to extend it to East Grinstead and Horley in the coming weeks.

Katherine Saunders, ABC chief executive said:

“We have been overwhelmed with the number of volunteers who have come forward and we’d like to thank them all for offering to support this service. We are, of course, committed to protecting both our volunteers and our clinicians. We insure drivers and carry out all necessary checks while also providing PPE. This is a valuable resource for our clinicians, and increases our capacity to reach more patients.”

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