Health and Sanitation Safety Awareness Courses (HASSA): 360training Is Helping Businesses Stay Open Safely During COVID-19
As an Austin-based tech company, we're always thrilled to share the method behind our madness with Built-In ATX, which shares the successes and innovations of local startups.
Recently, CEO Tom Anderson interviewed with Built-In ATX to shine a light on our newest sanitation training program, the Health and Sanitation Safety Awareness program (HASSA).
Here's a little of what he had to say.
What is HASSA Training?
As Anderson explained to ATX, HASSA training "focuses on helping businesses improve their health and sanitation training to lower the risk of contagious disease spread among employees and customers."
HASSA provides structured training on procedures, protocols, best practices, and contingency plans.
It's a living curriculum based on leading science.
As trusted medical and scientific organizations like the CDC, WHO, and OSHA incorporate new information about the virus into their official recommendations, HASSA training is updated to make the program as accurate and effective as possible.
Food and Beverage Takeout, Pickup, and Delivery (Managers)
Managers learn how to lower the risk of spreading illnesses.
Food and Beverage Takeout, Pickup, and Delivery (Employees)
The course teaches employees how to limit the spread of illnesses.
Food and Beverage Takeout, Pickup, and Delivery (Consumers)
Learn the best practices for preventing the spread of illnesses when ordering to go
Reimagining Health and Sanitation Training in a Global Pandemic
Why Was HASSA Training Developed?
"The HASSA program is a direct result of COVID-19. Most of the regulated health and safety training today does not adequately address the spread of contagious diseases in our work environments or in how we buy and consume food," Anderson told ATX.
Before COVID-19, we never had a public health threat serious enough to make us focus on preventing person-to-person contagion outside specific at-risk settings like healthcare.
Although HASSA tailored to other industries is on the horizon, "we decided to initially focus on the food and beverage industry given they have been hit so hard by the pandemic and we all still need to buy food."
Traditionally, food safety training has focused on foodborne illnesses – infectious agents or toxins that are primarily spread through contaminated food or water.
HASSA training focuses on aerosolized and surface transmission instead.
Is HASSA Training Required?
At the moment, this kind of sanitation training has no regulatory requirements.
As Anderson told Built-In ATX, "We have historically focused on regulated training. In this case, we thought it was irresponsible to wait for regulations requiring the training. We wanted to do our part now to help reduce the spread of the virus and help businesses operate safely in this new environment."
That doesn't mean HASSA certification doesn't have its advantages. "Consumers are likely to become more focused on buying from safer businesses. A business is also more likely to attract and retain high-quality employees if they take their employees' safety seriously."
What is the Future of HASSA Training?
Food and beverage industry courses like food delivery safety are just a starting place for the HASSA program.
As Anderson said, "Ideally, various industry regulatory bodies will integrate [HASSA] training into the required training for critical industries."
It could be incorporated into training that serves public safety, like food safety and protection. In other industries, it may be a better fit for occupational health initiatives.
Anderson suggested that if organizations like OSHA make it mandatory, "we will not only lower the spread of COVID-19 but other contagious diseases like the seasonal flu."
Can You Get Free HASSA Training?
We have affordable courses for food managers and food service employees.
But we also have a free HASSA course that teaches consumers about food pickup and delivery safety.
Why? As Tom Anderson put it, "As consumers, we should all be informed and reward food providers that are taking the necessary safety steps in helping slow the spread of COVID-19."
The consumer HASSA training "emphasizes the proper ways for consumers to assess if social environments are set up to prevent the spread of the virus."
With months of conflicting information and policy changes behind us, that sounds like a tutorial we could all benefit from.