Many thanks for your Jan. 16 article on food inspections (“Delay in health inspections affecting local businesses”). Each year 1 in 6 Americans gets sick from eating contaminated food, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. This illness impacts an estimated 76 million Americans, resulting in 325,000 hospitalizations and 5,000 deaths each year.

Worldwide, 420,000 deaths are food related, with 125,000 deaths in children less than five years of age. In Mobile County in 2018, we investigated 10 possible cases of foodborne illness, with no deaths.

Mobile County Health Department strives to protect food service customers by educating providers and strict enforcement of U.S. Food and Drug Administration/Alabama Department of Public Health rules. Our goal is zero persons getting sick from food in Mobile County, Alabama.

Bernard H. Eichold II, MD, Dr.PH, FACP,
Health Officer