Rhode Island Department of Health Office of Food Protection Title: Advancing Conformance with the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards (VNRFRPS) (U18) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number: RFA-FD-12-011 The Rhode Island Department of Health proposes to develop, implement and improve upon the retail food program to achieve significant conformance with the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards (VNRFRPS). The program will be based on best practices, and, at the end of the five years, there will be an infrastructure in place that is effective, efficient, and focused on food safety hazards. Ultimately, there will be a reduced risk of foodborne illness and public health will be protected. A Compliance Evaluation/Standardization Officer in the Office of Food Protection will be responsible for managing the VNRFRPS under the direction of the Principal Investigator and ensure progress towards conformance with the ten elements of the national retail standards, which include: the program's regulatory foundation;staff training;inspection; program uniformity;foodborne illness;food defense preparedness and response; compliance and enforcement;industry and community relations;resource management; and program assessment and quality assurance. The five year plan to meet the standards includes ongoing assessment and updates to the strategic plan based on accomplishments, new developments, and evaluation to ensure full alignment with the VNRFRPS. There will be ongoing training of staff, development of policies and protocols, improved analysis and management of data, progress reports, internal and external audits, collaboration within and outside the department, and a continuous quality improvement program that is sustainable at the end of the project. RI will share lessons learned, aim for transparency, and make every effort to benefit other regulatory programs and FDA. The State intends to support FDA in this endeavor and will have a positive impact on public health and the reduction of foodborne illness in and out of state.
Rhode Island Department of Health Office of Food Protection Title: Advancing Conformance with the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards (VNRFRPS) (U18) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number: RFA-FD-12-011 The Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) estimates that 48 million people become sick from foodborne illnesses each year in the United States. This grant will give Rhode Island the opportunity to further develop and improve its retail food safety program so that it conforms with the ten national standards. By putting these best practices in place, the food will be safer, the risk of foodborne illness will be reduced, and public health will be protected.