London Health Sciences Centre and St. Joseph’s Health Care, London respond to food recall



For Immediate Release:
December 3, 2010

(LONDON, Ontario) – On December 3, 2010, London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) and St. Joseph’s Health Care, London (St. Joseph’s) were alerted to the voluntary recall of a cheese product supplied by an outside food distributor, Saputo Inc. The product has been recalled because it may contain the listeria bacteria.

This cheese is used in grilled cheese sandwiches that are served to inpatients at LHSC and St. Joseph’s. Upon notification, both hospitals immediately pulled all grilled cheese sandwiches from their shelves and removed them from the patient menus. A thorough investigation showed 48 of these recalled sandwiches were served to inpatients on Dec. 3 at LHSC and St. Joseph’s Hospitals, prior to the hospitals receiving the recall notice.

The risk to patients is extremely low. As per hospital quality control measures for food services, grilled cheese sandwiches are cooked at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 38 minutes, which brings the sandwich’s internal temperature to at least 167 degrees Fahrenheit. This temperature kills potentially dangerous bacteria and ensures food is safe to eat.

Hospitals immediately began contacting patients to provide information and the opportunity to ask questions.

Sandwiches were not served at St. Joseph’s Parkwood Hospital, Mount Hope or Regional Mental Health Care sites. Nor was the cheese served in hospital cafeterias or any other food outlets in either of the hospitals.


For more information, please contact:

Cory Habermehl
Corporate Communications
and Public Relations
London Health Sciences Centre
519-685-8500, ext. 58738

After 4:00pm call (519) 685-8500
and ask to have the
Communicator-on-Call paged.

Dahlia Reich
and Public Relations
St. Joseph’s Health Care, London
519.646.6100 ext. 65294

After 4:00pm call (519) 646-6100
and ask to have the
Communicator-on-Call paged.

About London Health Sciences Centre

London Health Sciences Centre has been in the forefront of medicine in Canada for 135 years and offers the broadest range of specialized clinical services in Ontario. Building on the traditions of its founding hospitals to provide compassionate care in an academic teaching setting, London Health Sciences Centre is home to Children’s Hospital, South Street Hospital, University Hospital, Victoria Hospital, two family medical centres, and two research institutes – Children’s Health Research Institute and Lawson Health Research Institute, a joint research initiative with St. Joseph’s Health Care, London. As a leader in medical discovery and health research, London Health Sciences Centre has a history of over 50 international and national firsts and attracts top clinicians and researchers from around the world. As a regional referral centre, London Health Sciences Centre cares for the most medically complex patients including critically injured adults and children in Southwestern Ontario and beyond. The hospital’s nearly 15,000 staff, physicians, students and volunteers provide care for more than one million patient visits a year. For more information visit

About St. Joseph’s Health Care London

St. Joseph’s Health Care, London is a major patient care, teaching and research centre with a distinguished legacy of service to London, Southwestern Ontario and the veterans of Canada, dating back more than 130 years. St. Joseph’s five key role areas include acute/ambulatory care, complex care and veterans care, long-term care, rehabilitation and specialized geriatrics and specialized mental health care. Facilities and services including St. Joseph’s Hospital, Parkwood Hospital, Mount Hope Centre for Long Term Care and Regional Mental Health Care London and St. Thomas are part of the St. Joseph’s family. Our research arm, the Lawson Health Research Institute, continues to direct their research to the development of new knowledge that is continually being applied directly to patient care. More than 400,000 patients annually receive care from close to 6,000 physicians and staff at St. Joseph’s. St. Joseph’s is affiliated with the University of Western Ontario.