At least once every year the health authority shall inspect each food establishment located in the state. The health authority shall make as many additional inspections and reinspections as necessary for the enforcement of this chapter [NRS 446.885]
Unannounced inspections are conducted by EHS staff on a regular basis, with those establishments conducting the highest degree of food preparation or serving at-risk populations receiving priority. EHS conducts inspections of new food and drink establishments, establishments undergoing ownership changes, major remodeling, and/or substantive menu changes.
EHS inspection protocol is based on the United States Food and Drug Administration’s Model Food Code. Each violation has an assigned point value, with those items that affect food safety in the establishment being the most heavily evaluated and weighted. The five risk factors that inspection staff evaluates in every high risk food establishment are as follows:
- Poor Employee Hygiene and Health
- Contaminated Equipment
- Food from an Unsafe Source
- Improper Holding Temperatures & Cooling Practices
- Inadequate Cooking
In addition to the five risk factors, the inspector evaluates building components, equipment, food handling procedures, menu content, and sanitation procedures. Physical properties of the facility such as appropriate lighting, fly and vermin control, water supply, backflow and chemical storage are also evaluated during the inspection process. Special attention is given to the facilities’ consumer advisory for under-cooked or raw food items as well.
The inspector also determines if the person in charge can demonstrate a good working knowledge of the food code and can demonstrate active managerial control in the establishment. If those competencies are absent, the person in charge may be required to take and successfully pass a course of instruction on food safety. Such training is provided by certified private instructors located throughout the state. Owners and operators are encouraged to observe the inspection process and take part in dialog with the inspector. Inspections are conducted with education as a major component.
Occasionally, a facility has critical violations. In those situations, the inspector conducts a follow-up visit to ensure all corrections have been completed in the specified amount of time. If violations are noted that pose a risk to public health and if those violations cannot be immediately corrected in the course of the inspection, the facility may be closed. When all violations are corrected and the inspector determines that the establishment no longer poses a risk to the public, it is permitted to resume operation
Requesting an inspection report
Food and Drink Establishment Inspections are public records. Copies of inspection reports are available upon written request. Inspection requests must include the name and address of the establishment, the date or timeframe of the requested inspection, and the proposed use of the inspection information. Please see "Office Locations" for more information.