The Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors (JAPHI) is lauding Public Health Inspectors (PHIs) for their continued vigilance on the front line as they work to safeguard the health and safety of the nation amidst the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
President of the Association, Karen Brown, told JIS News that since the first confirmed case of the virus on the island in March, PHIs have been active in their efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, ensuring compliance with the public health measures implemented by the Government.
“Hearty commendations to all the Public Health Inspectors who are actively out there in the field supporting the Ministry of Health [and Wellness] in preventing and controlling the scourge of the COVID-19 pandemic that is affecting us. Public Health Inspectors have been known for years to be vanguards of health and have been promoting some of these basic hygiene principles that the Government is currently promoting,” she said.
Ms. Brown pointed out that PHIs have been playing a critical role in contact tracing activities, as well as a number of additional COVID-19 response activities, including the inspection of quarantine and isolation facilities, “to ensure that there are adequate infection control measures and environmental health standards in place to minimise any transmission of the disease”.
“They have been actively participating in the social distancing regime that has been implemented under the Disaster Risk Management Mitigation Act, because they have to ensure that some of the protocols that the Government requires are in place and ensure that persons who are doing business in the establishments, whether they are consumers or proprietors, that they follow the rules and regulations for their own health safety,” she added.
Despite the associated risks in battling the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Brown said PHIs remain enthusiastic in the execution of their duties and have been giving priority attention to infirmaries and golden age homes.
In addition, Ms. Brown noted that Public Health Inspectors continue vector-control and intervention activities as well as water quality testing to ensure water safety.
“We also recognise that the scourge of vector-borne diseases is upon us, and this is something that the public health teams have to be out there monitoring to ensure that the population is protected from dengue fever and all these conditions,” she added.