January 15, 2009

Public Health Inspectors: Celebrating the contribution towards protecting the health of our residents


National Environmental Public Health Week January 18th to 24th


NEWMARKET Each year the third week in January is designated as National Environmental Public Health Week.  The Regional Municipality of York joins communities across Canada in recognizing and celebrating the services and work that Public Health Inspectors provide to protect the health of residents in our Region.


Through education and enforcement of health legislation, the Public Health Inspectors role in our community is to promote and protect the health of York Region residents.  Specifically, York Region Public Health Inspectors are responsible for:


         Inspection of food premises (restaurants, cafeterias)

         Monitoring of public beaches and public drinking water systems for water quality

         Infection control inspections of long-term care facilities, child care facilities and personal service settings (spas, nail parlours, tattoo and piercing premises)

         Investigation of cases where a person has been bitten or scratched by an animal to prevent the spread of rabies

         Co-ordinating the West Nile Virus program activities

         Public pool, spa and wading pool inspections

         Inspection of child care playgrounds

         Indoor and outdoor air quality, environmental inspections and investigations

         Disease investigation and outbreak management

         Tobacco education and enforcement activities

         Health promotion and education initiatives

         Enforcement activities



In 2008, the accomplishments of Public Health Inspectors in York Region included the following:

         Conducted over 11,500 food premises inspections

         Conducted 2,687 infection control inspections including, personal service settings, long-term care homes and child care facilities

         Investigated 1,148 animal bite cases

         Inspected 838 recreational water facilities including public pools, spas and wading pools

         Submitted 3,661 drinking water samples on behalf of private well owners

         Investigated 289 air quality complaints

         Monitored the water quality of 17 public beaches between May and September

         Presented 88 dining establishments with the Eat Smart! Award for meeting exceptional standards in food safety, healthy food choices and smoke-free dining

         Educated 759 tobacco vendors on display ban requirement of tobacco products (under the Smoke Free Ontario Act) and obtained 100 per cent compliance


For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, please visit www.york.ca


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Media Contact:         Jennifer Mitchell-Emmerson, Community and Health Services, York Region

                                 Phone:  905 830-4444, ext. 4016 or After-hours Cell: 905 251-5553

                                 Email: jennifer.mitchellemmerson@york.ca

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