Safe Food Handling


Diarrhea, vomiting, and a fever – they are all symptoms commonly associated with the flu. But did you know that these same symptoms can be caused by something you ate? That’s right – these same symptoms are also associated with foodborne illness. A foodborne illness is an acute gastrointestinal infection transmitted to people by food or beverages containing bacteria and other harmful organisms. Foodborne illness is usually the result of improper food handling during the process of cleaning, storage, cooking, or reheating of food. In fact, as much as 40% of all communicable diseases result from poor food handling. Preventing the spread of bacteria in the handling of food is especially important when dealing with groups that are at greater risk, such as pregnant women, young children, older adults, and people with immune systems that are weakened by disease or medical treatment. Individuals in these groups may have a reduced ability to fight off infection making them susceptible to a foodborne illness. E. coli, for example, is a very harmful bacteria that can cause a severe and potentially fatal illness primarily in the elderly and the sick. Depending on your job responsibilities, it is important to know why safe food handling is important and how to properly handle food to prevent the spread of bacteria and foodborne illness. This course has been designed with those objectives in mind.


Hours: 0.50


Certificates provided by accrediting body (2 Match)

Pennsylvania Personal Care Home Administrators


This activity is approved for 0.50 contact hours.

Illinois - Safe Food Handling


This activity is approved for 0.50 contact hours.

Course Details

Course Code: REL-SRC-0-SFH
Hours: 0.5
Type: Online Course
Content Expiration Date: 12/31/2021
Learning Objectives:
Define what bacteria are
Identify how bacteria cause foodborne illnesses
List the four main types of bacteria responsible for causing foodborne illness in a long-term care facility
Identify ways to properly clean, store, cook, and reheat food
Recall proper hygiene guidelines and why they are important to follow when handling food
Identify ways to properly clean and sanitize dishware

Section 1: Introduction A. About This Course B. Learning Objectives Section 2: What are Bacteria? A. Review Section 3: Bacteria that Cause Foodborne Illness A. Types of Bacteria B. Campylobacter C. E. coli D. Salmonella E. Staphylococcus F. Listeria G. Review H. Summary Section 4: Food Handling Guidelines A. Steps for Protection B. Clean C. Avoid Cross-Contamination: Separate D. Avoid the TDZ: Cook E. Refrigeration: Chill F. Thawing G. Thermometers H. Leftovers I. Cleaning Equipment J. Review K. Summary Section 5: Personal Hygiene Guidelines A. Handwashing B. Other Personal Hygiene C. Review D. Summary Section 6: Conclusion A. Summary B. Congratulations! C. Course Contributor D. Resources E. References

Instructor: Karen C. Schnaufer, BSN, RN
Karen C. Schnaufer, BSN, RN, Content Writer, Relias Learning, has held positions as staff nurse, charge nurse, research nurse clinician, and clinical instructor with over 25 years of clinical practice in a broad range of specialties: med/surg, pediatrics, long term care, mental health, research, and IDD. Prior to becoming a Registered Nurse, Ms. Schnaufer successfully challenged the Practical Nursing Boards in NY. After working with the Breast Oncology Research group at Duke, Ms. Schnaufer switched her focus to the area of IDD and worked with individuals with intellectual disabilities and mental health issues, who live in group homes. Among her various responsibilities in this area was to train direct support staff and clinicians in medical issues/medication administration, participate in state surveys, providing and implementing plans of correction, as well as, serving on various committees, such as Human Rights, to help improve the lives of the individuals supported. To this day, she continues to volunteer in this realm. A veteran of the U.S.A.F., Ms. Schnaufer is committed to creating relevant and intelligent continuing education courses for healthcare professionals throughout the continuum of care. Disclosure: Karen C. Schnaufer, BSN, RN has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Target Audience:
The target audience for this course is: entry level Direct Care Workers; in the following settings: Acute Care Facility, Palliative Care, Home Health, Hospice, Long-term Care, Assisted Living, Residential Care.
Relias will be transparent in disclosing if any commercial support, sponsorship or co-providership is present prior to the learner completing the course.
Course Delivery Method and Format
Asynchronous/Online Distance Learning; please see certificate details for specifics on delivery format.
Relias has a grievance policy in place to facilitate reports of dissatisfaction. Relias will make every effort to resolve each grievance in a mutually satisfactory manner. In order to report a complaint or grievance please contact Relias.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Support by completing the web form ( or by using the chat functionality.
All courses offered by Relias, LLC are developed from a foundation of diversity, inclusiveness, and a multicultural perspective. Knowledge, values and awareness related to cultural competency are infused throughout the course content.
Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer or otherwise does not constitute or imply any endorsement, recommendation, or favoring of, or affiliation with, Relias, LLC.
All characteristics and organizations referenced in the following training are fictional. Any resemblance to any actual organizations or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.
To earn continuing education credit for this course you must achieve a passing score of 80% on the post-test and complete the course evaluation.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Customer Support here.