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December 31, 2004
For immediate release

Minister Proclaims Environmental Health Week

Health and Social Services

January 3 to 9 is Environmental Health Week in Prince Edward Island, recognizing the important work of Public Health Inspectors, noted Health and Social Services Minister Chester Gillan today.

This is the second annual Environmental Health Week, which is a national campaign by the Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors (CIPHI) to recognize the work of all Environmental Public Health Professionals across Canada and the importance of environmental public health programs in our health care system.

“Islanders may be aware that our local Environmental Health Officers inspect restaurants, child care facilities, nursing homes, community care facilities, swimming pools, tattoo parlours, sales of tobacco to minors, and slaughterhouses,” said Minister Gillan, “but it is important that we recognize that these professionals also work diligently in the prevention of illness and disease through education of the public on issues of safety such as food safety, safe drinking water and indoor air quality, and enforcement of numerous acts and regulations. Environmental Health Officers are respected for the work they do. The men and women who work in this sector are committed to preventing illness and injury due to unsafe food, water, air or equipment.”

CIPHI is the only professional association for public health inspectors in Canada. CIPHI works to protect the health of all Canadians on environmental issues while promoting the science of environmental health and the profession. Environmental Health Officers are certified by the Board of Certification of the CIPHI. This certification process guarantees that the highest standards for entry into the profession are met. CIPHI also provides ongoing opportunities for professional development.

“Students with an interest in the field of science and/or health issues may want to consider a career in environmental health,” added Minister Gillan.

In June 2004, Prince Edward Island hosted the 70th annual National CIPHI Education Conference in Charlottetown. Close to 300 health inspectors, health professionals and associates from across the country participated in the conference which included such keynote speakers as Dr. Doug Powell from the University of Guelph and Scientific Director of the Food Safety Network, Senator Jane Cordy from the Senatorial Division of Nova Scotia, and Dr. Lamont Sweet, Chief Health Officer for Prince Edward Island. The conference offered 38 education sessions over the three-day period, including sessions on topics such as lead in drinking water, tracking food outbreaks, avian flu, BSE in Canada and residential air quality.

Media Contact: Anne-Marie Smith
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