Accra Metropolis certifies over 7,000 food handlers following mandatory health screening

Accra Metropolis certifies over 7,000 food handlers following mandatory health screening
Accra Metropolis certifies food handlers

In 2023, the Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) certified 7,135 food handlers to operate in the Accra Metropolis after conducting mandatory medical health screenings for 8,407 individuals.

According to the 2023 Annual Report of the Public Health Department of the AMA, out of the total number screened, 6,240 were females and 2,167 were males. All participants hailed from various sectors of the hospitality industry, including restaurants, drinking spots, pubs, and chop bars.

Of those screened, 6,014 females and 1,121 males were found fit and issued with suitability health and safety certificates. Gilbert Nii Ankrah, Head of Public Affairs at AMA, noted that 5,287 were new applicants while 3,118 were renewals. The primary objective of the exercise, Mr. Ankrah emphasized, was to uphold high standards in the food industry, thereby enhancing public confidence and reducing potential health risks associated with food consumption.

“The screening process included educational sessions covering proper hygiene practices, nutrition, and general health awareness,” Mr. Ankrah stated. These sessions aimed to address various health parameters such as communicable diseases, hygiene-related illnesses, and overall physical fitness.

Out of the total number screened, 272 vendors were identified with health concerns and provided with guidance and referrals to appropriate healthcare facilities for further evaluation and treatment.

The AMA encouraged all individuals involved in the preparation, transportation, and sale of food in restaurants, cafes, catering companies, and chop bars to undergo regular health check-ups and participate in health screening exercises organized by the Assembly.

Furthermore, the cost of acquiring a food handlers certificate remained unchanged at GH¢60 for the 2024 fiscal year, ensuring accessibility for all individuals in the food industry seeking certification.

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