buffet.jpgThe Department of Health is responsible for inspecting and permitting approximately 1500 various food service establishments. Restaurants, deli's, luncheonettes, school cafeterias, fast food establishments, catering and food trucks, food vending machines, and the food stands at street fairs, carnivals, public pools and little league fields all receive routine inspections. Additionally, staff investigates complaints from the public regarding cleanliness or suspected illness after visiting a facility. Food establishments are regulated by the authority of the NYS Sanitary Code Subpart 14-1 (Food Service Establishments), Subpart 14-2 (Temporary Food Service Establishments), Subpart 14-4 (Mobile Food Service Establishments and Foodcarts), Subpart 14-5 (Vending of Food & Beverages) , and Rockland County Sanitary Code Article VI.  Operators who fail to comply with Sanitary Code requirements can be fined or ordered closed.

Prospective food service operators can obtain the relevant forms and applications.

pizza_2.jpgThe Department offers a Food Safety Training Course several times a year. The purpose of the five hour program is to educate food service managers about the causes and effects of foodborne illness, resulting in fewer complaints from patrons and a reduction in the number of enforcement actions against food establishments. Annually, about 300 food managers attend the course and receive certificates of completion.

The public may access food service inspection results online through our Restaurant Inspections web page, which is updated monthly. Every food service establishment in the county is listed.  Prospective patrons may learn if their restaurant of choice has a satisfactory inspection history.

Day Care Centers

kitchen.jpgThe Department is charged with approving the water supply, waste disposal, and food source at the numerous centers in the county to ensure the safety and well being of the children who attend the center. The approvals are required prior to licensing by the NYS Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS). Staff will visit to inspect kitchens at the centers that prepare food for the children. The kitchens are required to meet the same sanitary standards as restaurants in New York State.
More information regarding child care can be found on the OCFS website.

Children's Camps

The Department is also responsible for inspecting and camp1.jpgpermitting approximately 70 children's camp in the county. The camps are operated by private owners, municipalities and religious and charitable organizations.
A camp operator must submit a lengthy application for a permit each spring. A pre-operational inspection conducted by department staff involves a thorough review of camp staff qualifications and training, first aid and CPR certifications, camper medical forms, and a walk around the camp grounds to observe the structural integrity of buildings and swimming pools.

An unannounced inspection is conducted at least once during the camp season to observe the supervision of campers while they are engaged in the numerous activities that might pose a risk to their health and safety. Go-carts, swimming, climbing towers, zip lines, and the food service are all checked while in use by the campers.

Children's Camps are regulated by New York State Sanitary Code Subpart 7-2 and the Rockland County Sanitary Code Article VIII. Camps not in compliance could face enforcement action resulting in a civil penalty.