Online Program

Access to food safety recommendations for the elderly on the world wide web

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 12:42 p.m. - 12:54 p.m.

Jennifer J. Quinlan, PhD, Dept. of Nutrition Sciences, College of Nursing and Health Professions, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Victoria Laidlaw, Dept. of Nutrition Sciences, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Erica O'Grady, Department of Nutrition Sciences, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Hoi YIn Chu, Department of Nutrition Sciences, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
INTRODUCTION: The elderly suffer greater complications from, and mortality associated with, foodborne illness. There is a need to ensure that education material is available to inform the elderly of increased risks, proper food handling and specific foods to avoid. Research described here assessed the availability of food safety information for the elderly on the World Wide Web. METHODS: A list of eight search terms related to both food safety and elderly health was developed. Using these terms, basic food safety websites as well as general elderly health websites were identified. The first 20 sites for each term were assessed for content regarding food safety for the elderly using a ten-question assessment tool. The tool evaluated the websites' provision of basic food safety information, increased risks for elderly adults and inclusion of unique food safety guidelines for the elderly such as the recommendation to reheat lunchmeat. RESULTS: Of 160 identified sites, 12 duplicates were eliminated. Of general food safety websites, 12% provided information about the elderly on their main pages. In contrast, 65% of elderly health sites provided information about food safety on their main pages. Of the sites lacking elderly food safety information on the main page, a more exhaustive analysis of the entire site did in fact yield food safety information for the elderly for 45% of the sites. DISCUSSION: While food safety information and increased risks for elderly are available on the web there is a need to increase access to such materials, especially on food safety websites.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education

Learning Objectives:
Discuss increased risks for foodborne illness complications and mortality among aging populations. Identify resources available on the world wide web that educate the elderly about their increased risks for foodborne illness Name specific CDC and USDA recommendations for safe food handling and consumption among the elderly

Keyword(s): Food Safety, Aging

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conduct research in the area of food safety and am the PI on multiple USDA funded research grants involving food safety and public health, particularly with respect to vulnerable populations. Additionally I am currently a member of the USDA National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 5142.0: Nutrition and Aging