CMS Urges Nursing Home Administrators to Be on the Lookout For Recalled Peanut Products

March 31, 2009

In a memorandum from the Survey and Certification Group, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has urged nursing home and other long-term care facility administrators, owners, and food managers to check their institutional supply of peanut butter and other products containing peanut ingredients for food items that may be affected by recent voluntary recalls due to possible Salmonella contamination.

The memorandum, Reference: S&C-09-29, was issued in response to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requests for assistance in warning nursing homes and long-term care facilities regarding the potential danger to their residents of eating recalled food products. According to the memorandum, the FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have received reports of deaths of nursing home residents with underlying health conditions who had consumed recalled food products containing peanuts contaminated with Salmonella.

The FDA provides the following helpful examples of products that might contain peanut ingredients:

  • Cookies
  • Crackers
  • Cereal
  • Candy
  • Ice Cream
  • (Major national brands of jarred peanut butter found in grocery stores have not been among the products recalled)

Personnel at nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are encouraged to check the FDA searchable database of recalled products to determine if food supplies could contain contaminated items and to identify additional recalls as they become available. For those without Internet access, the same information can be obtained by calling the FDA at 1-888-SAFEFOOD during regular business hours.

Please contact one of the authors if you have questions about CMS’s memorandum.