MIL-OSI Canada: Environmental Health Week highlights important work of environmental health professionals

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Source: Government of Canada – Prince Edward Island

Environmental health professionals work across Prince Edward Island each day to protect the health and safety of Islanders from disease and injury. 

Environmental Health Officers across Canada are being recognized as part of Environmental Public Health Week from September 20 to 24, 2021. The national campaign is headed by the Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors. This year’s theme is Be the Change.

“Environmental health professionals are dedicated to promoting and protecting the health and safety of Islanders every day. The importance of their work has been highlighted throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. These professionals are working the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic response each and every day to ensure the health and safety of Islanders and visitors to our province. I want to thank all environmental health professionals in PEI for their hard work and dedication.”

– Health and Wellness Minister Ernie Hudson

Environmental Health relates to aspects of human health and disease that are determined by factors in the environment and includes assessing and controlling factors, which can potentially affect people’s health. In Prince Edward Island there are 11 Environmental Health Officers who are involved in the inspection, enforcement and education of a wide variety of programs and services.  Some of these areas include food premises, recreational water, long term care facilities, childcare facilities, personal services, drinking water systems, sewage systems, air quality, and rental accommodations.  

“Environmental health officers work together with the industry and facility operators to reduce the chance of illness and prevent disease in PEI. They provide tremendous support to the Chief Public Health Office and are instrumental to the protection of population health across the province,” said Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison. “The role of environmental health officers has been critical throughout the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”  

In addition to routine work duties, Environmental Health Officers have been deployed as front-line staff for the Chief Public Health Office as part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  
These additional roles include:

  • completing COVID inspections of all PEI businesses;
  • reviewing and approving COVID-19 operational plans; 
  • responding to COVID-19 concerns and complaints from Islanders and local businesses;
  • completing health screenings of travelers at all entry points to PEI and identifying when self-isolation is required;
  • providing infection prevention and control guidance and support to Islanders and businesses.  

Media contact:
Samantha Hughes
Department of Health and Wellness
shughes@gov.pe.ca

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