Tag Archives: Health
Hospitality Industry Security Update: “The Case For Giving Hotels the Same Health Grades as Restaurants”
Many hotels fail to perform adequate background checks on job applicants before hiring them. In September 2011, a woman staying at a Best Western hotel in Arizona woke up in the middle of the night to find a man standing over her bed.Â She saysÂ the man raped her. HeÂ was a registered level-3 sex offender,Â according to news reports, butÂ Best Western had hired him as aÂ night clerk and given him a master key to guest rooms, allowingÂ him unfettered access to turn any of itsÂ female guests into his next victims
The difference between a hotel room at $75 a night and $750 a night is the view, the extra shampoo, the cost of the pillows, the fluff of the towels. Price is a measure of comfort and service. What must always be the same â€” at every price â€” is your security, your safety and cleanliness. Unfortunately, itâ€™s not. Across the country, hotels are skimping on key safety and security measures, and the consequences range fromÂ stolen laptopsÂ andÂ Peeping TomsÂ to sexual assaults andÂ robbery at gunpoint. More than 125 property crimes are committed in hotels and motels every day,Â in addition to more than 21 violent crimes (excluding murders).
For more:Â http://wapo.st/1vnfYFb
Ebola fears are most obvious in the airline sector. Shares of American Airlines Group ( hurt by the news that the new Ebola patient flew the day before being diagnosed. Both airlines are down nearly 20% over the past month alone….Hotel stocks like Hilton Worldwide ( ) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide( ) have also been punished by the Ebola concerns.) and Delta Air Lines ( ) fell sharply on Wednesday,
The Ebola epidemic is starting to contaminate sentiment on Wall Street, which is already losing sleep over countless crises.
The arrival of Ebola in the U.S. has coincided with a period of extreme turbulence in the stock market, which has tumbled about 8% from record highs.
The deadly virus is clearly not the only factor behind the market slide, but it’s a major unknown that is increasingly weighing on market psychology. That was the case again on Wednesday as the Dow plummeted as much as 370 points and health officials revealed a second health-care worker in Dallas tested positive for Ebola.
For more:Â http://cnnmon.ie/1CqQcQ7
“…The Wheat and Renta families, in the area for a local softball tournament, were among at least 14 people who became sick with flu-like symptoms including difficulty breathing, elevated temperature, body aches, dizziness, headaches, and chills, according to the suit…Legionnaires disease is typically contracted by inhaling or ingesting Legionella bacteria. The bacteria can also cause related illness, such as Pontiac fever, pneumonia, and other serious and sometimes permanent health conditions…”
Montgomery law firm Beasley-Allen has filed a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of two Jefferson County families, who the suit contends contracted Legionnaires disease while staying at the Sleep Inn & Suites in Millbrook.
Clayton Wheat and Tony Renta, along with several members of a girls’ softball team, became ill and several tested positive for Legionnaires disease after a weekend stay at the Sleep Inn & Suites, according to the suit filed by the Beasley Allen Law Firm in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama.
For more: http://on.mgmadv.com/1mR4GRC
Hospitality Industry Safety Issues: Top Restaurant Review Website Posts “City Health Inspection Scores” Online; Consumers Can Now More Easily View Inspection Background And History
“…Yelpâ€™s data come from city health inspectors, and the site displays the same information a consumer could find on a government site. But those sites can be unwieldy and, as Yelp Director of Public Policy Luther Lowe puts it…â€œNobody goes to the .gov websites before they go to Yelp. The goal is to put highly relevant information thatâ€™s created by taxpayers in a context that makes a lot of sense.â€…In a city committed to open data, inspection scores were already available online, via mobile app and in the restaurants themselves. But the new Yelp feature â€œgoes a little bit furtherâ€ by allowing consumers to read about inspection background and history…”
Yelp.com is starting to make it easier for diners to find a place to eat without getting sick.In August, Louisville became the second city to incorporate health-inspection information into its restaurant pages on the user-review site. San FranciscoÂ â€”Â Yelpâ€™s home turfÂ â€” was the first to do so back in January. Now, listed among a restaurantâ€™s business attributes (hours, parking, Wi-Fi access, etc.) is its health score out of 100 possible points and a link to a description ofÂ violations and previous inspections.
The new feature is â€œempowering the public with information,â€ says Kathy Harrison,Â communications director for theÂ Louisville Metro DepartmentÂ forÂ Public Health and Wellness.
The response to the addition of health scores has been â€œoverwhelmingly positive,â€ Lowe says, and Yelp is currently working with a half-dozen other cities to bring health scores to their restaurant pages over the next several months.
Hospitality Industry Health And Safety: Hotels And Restaurants Avoid Onsite “Automated External Defibrillator (AED)” Placement And Training Due To Concerns About Risks And Liability
“…the American Hotel and Lodging Association, singled out the patchwork of state laws as a major reason hotels in the U.S. “do not uniformly provide training and AEDs onsite,” in a 2009 report.
“…across America, there is anything but agreement among states about rules for the use of automated external defibrillators (or AEDs): Where they must be located; if they should be registered so authorities know where they are; whether a business that installs one is fully protected from liability; or even if a company is obliged to use one if someone on the premises suffers sudden cardiac arrest…”
There is no dispute that portable defibrillators, simple-to-use device that supply jolts to shock a stilled heart to beat again, could save tens of thousands of lives a year in this country alone if they are accessible to willing bystanders.
And some experts say the uneven patchwork of laws and regulations is a worrisome barrier to more widespread distribution and use of the battery-powered devices, which, if employed within minutes of cardiac arrest, can bring a person back to life.
For instance, many AEDs still carry labels saying they should only be used by “medical professionals” even though there are laws in every state giving “good Samaritan” protection to anyone who tries to use one to save the life of someone in cardiac arrest.
“The concerns about risk and liability remain very high,” said Richard Lazar, president of Readiness Systems LLC, a Portland, Ore., firm that consults with businesses and governments on AED training and placement.
Mandates for where AEDs should be placed are a national checkerboard. Nineteen states impose no mandates. But, in New York state, AEDs are required in health clubs, while in Florida, they’re mandatory in public high schools. Yet recent court rulings in both states have held that, just because those facilities are required to have the devices, they are under no legal obligation to use them.
Hospitality Industry Health Risks: Texas Restaurant Sued By Customer Claiming Sickness From “Cyclospora”; Parasite Traced To Tainted Salad Mix
“…According to her lawsuit,Â (the plaintiff)Â dined at an Olive Garden restaurant in Addison, Texas on July 1 and suffered nausea, fatigue and diarrhea a few days later. Tests confirmed that her gastroenteritis was caused by cyclospora, the lawsuit states…Cyclospora is a single-celled parasite that attacks the small intestine, causing diarrhea, loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach cramps, bloating, gas, nausea and fatigue, health officials said…”
A Dallas woman is suing Darden Restaurants, claiming she became sick with the rare parasite cyclospora after she ate at an Olive Garden restaurant.
Suzanne Matteis contracted the severe gastrointestinal sickness in July and tested positive for the parasite, said her attorney, Ryan Osterholm. Nationwide, there are at least 378 confirmed cases of illness from cyclospora in 16 states since mid-June.
On Friday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that cyclospora cases in Iowa and Nebraska have been traced to a tainted salad mix supplied by Taylor Farms de Mexico to Olive Garden and Red Lobster restaurants in those states. Both restaurant chains are owned by Darden Corporation.
Hospitality Industry Health Risks: Hotel Rooms Continue To Have “High Levels Of Bacteria” From Diversity Of Guests; “Infection Risk” As Sanitizing Equipment Goes “Room To Room”
“…a hotel isÂ not an operating room, and bugs may lurk, despite tip-top cleaning efforts.” TheÂ amount of guests who check in at hotels from different parts of the world mayÂ increase the exposure of germs…Cleaning items used by housekeepers suchÂ as sponges and mops were also found to have high levels of bacteria whichÂ increases the risk of infection as they go from room to room using the sameÂ sanitizing equipment…”
On average, hotel housekeepers spend 30 minutesÂ cleaning each room â€” about 14Â to 16 rooms in an eight hour shift. In a studyÂ conducted at theÂ UniversityÂ of Houston,Â researchers took 19 bacteria samples from items found in three hotel rooms inÂ three states: Texas, Indiana and South Carolina. While high levels of bacteriaÂ were discovered in bathroom sinks and floors, the dirtiest areas were lightÂ switches and TV remotes, which contained 112.7 colony-forming unites of bacteria (CFUs)Â and 67.6 CFUs, respectively. Moreover, light switches had the highest levels ofÂ fecal matter bacteria with 111.1 CFUs.
“GuestsÂ should not assume that their hotel room, not to mention all common surfacesÂ around the hotel such as doorknobs, front-desk pens … while (hopefully) clean,Â are not sterile,” Matilde Parente, MD,Â a California-basedÂ physician, biomedical safety consultant, and author board certified in pathologyÂ and integrative holistic medicine, told Medical Daily.
Hospitality Industry Legal Risks: North Carolina Hotel And Restaurant Sued By Woman “Sickened By Salmonella Infection”; Lawsuit Claims Failure To Maintain Sanitary Conditions Of Food
“…(the plaintiff), who claims to have become ill after eating at the hotel restaurant, filed a lawsuit in the Cumberland County Superior Court alleging the hotel owners served food that was ‘not fit for human consumption’…she also alleges that the defendant failed to ‘maintain and monitor the sanitary conditions of it’s food, drink, water, premises and employees’…”
A Fayetteville woman is seeking in excess of $10,000 in damages after she claims she became sick after eating at a restaurant at a Holiday Inn. Last week the Cumberland County Department of Public Health alerted the public of a possible salmonella outbreak after dozens of people claimed to have gotten sick after eating at the Holiday Inn Fayetteville â€“ Bordeaux.
The Cumberland County Department of Public Health says at least 70 people have reported signs or symptoms consistent with salmonella infections and five people were hospitalized. Twelve of those who reported symptoms are out of state. All of the people appear to have eaten at the All American Sports Bar and Grill and The CafÃ© Bordeaux within the hotel.
Health officials are worried that the outbreak could spread nationwide because the hotel is alongside Interstate 95.