Cockroach infestation shuts down cafeteria at California hospital

The cafeteria at St. John’s Health Center – the fabled Santa Monica hospital – was shut down this week after a health inspector found a cockroach infestation in the kitchen, county health officials said.

cockroachAt least 10 live cockroaches were found in the kitchen for the cafeteria, which is located on the second floor of the hospital in the 2100 block of Santa Monica Boulevard, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

Officials at the Westside hospital expect to reopen the cafeteria Saturday, and in the meantime, patients’ visitors are being provided with a list of local restaurants, said Patricia Aidem, a hospital spokeswoman.

“Providence Saint John’s apologizes for the inconvenience to our visitors, physicians and staff and, while it’s difficult to control these natural occurrences, pledges continued diligence in ensuring cleanliness and safety,” the hospital chain said in a statement.

Founded by Roman Catholic nuns in 1942, St. John’s hospital has cared for celebrity patients such as Elizabeth Taylor, Michael Jackson and President Ronald Reagan.

Nosestretcher alert at the Santa Monica farmer’s market: manager confused about food safety

What is supposed to be a puff piece about Laura Avery, the supervisor of Santa Monica, California’s four farmer’s markets, instead highlights the risks of relying on people peddling soundbites rather than food.

The reporter asks:

Incidents like the salmonella-spinach scare — does that freak out people at farmers markets?

And the answer from the farmer’s market guru is:

They traced [the source of the salmonella] to runoff from a salmonella-infested feedlot, animals creating salmonella in their intestine because they’re fed grain that they can’t digest.

The reporter then asks, How about making you secretary of agriculture?

It was E. coli O157:H7 in 2006 in spinach. The same strain was found in a neighboring cow-calf operation – not a feedlot – and they were eating grass, not grain. The spinach involved was transition organic.

But that one sentence from the person who runs the farmers’ markets encapsulates everything that’s wrong about the discussion of food today in the U.S. — people hear things in the ether and tailor the message to suit their own means.

I got a lot of respect for anyone who can make a living farming, but does there have to be so much BS involved when it comes to marketing?