The Kids’ Uni childcare centre operated by the University of Wollongong has been fined more than $3000 after bungles where a child was twice given food to which they were allergic.
The two incidents happened in January this year and September last year at the Kids’ Uni centre on Ellen St, Wollongong.
Both involved a child being given milk products when they were allergic to dairy, and consuming some of them before the error was noticed.
In the first case the dairy was in mashed potato; in the second the child was given yoghurt.
The incidents were reported by the child’s parents to the NSW Food Authority, which investigated and issued the penalties, part of which involves being listed on the “name and shame” list online.
UOW Pulse [has] made a number of changes to policies and processes around preparing and serving foodUOW spokesman
A spokesman for UOW Pulse, the university-owned company which runs the Kids Uni, said the child has not suffered an allergic reaction on either occasion.
“In both incidents a child with an allergy to dairy foods was given food that contained dairy products and consumed a small amount before the food was removed,” he said.
“The child did not suffer an allergic reaction on either occasion.
“On both occasions, UOW Pulse reported the incident to the parents of the child, who then reported it to NSW Food Authority while UOW Pulse reported the incidents to the NSW Department of Education, in accordance with established reporting procedures.”
He said the incidents had sparked a review of allergy management across all Pulse’s child care centres – two at the Keiraville campus, one at the Innovation campus, and Ellen St.
“In response to the incidents, UOW Pulse engaged an independent review of allergy management within its childcare centres, and following the review made a number of changes to policies and processes around preparing and serving food,” he said.
“Additionally, all Kids Uni staff have been given allergy awareness training, and UOW Pulse has developed and implemented an ongoing allergy awareness training module that includes a course for new staff, a refresher course for existing staff, and an allergy awareness program for children at the centres.”
The NSW Food Authority’s register of penalty notices can be accessed here.