Monday March 22, 2010
Reporters Invited to Accompany Environmental Public Health Professionals
March 22 – 26 is Environmental Health Professional Week
If you’ve eaten at a restaurant in Louisville or have stayed at a hotel or motel or if you’ve been able to sit out on your deck on a summer evening without being eaten alive by mosquitoes, you’ve been touched by the work of public environmental health professionals.
Governor Steve Beshear has proclaimed the week of March 22-26, 2010 Environmental Public Health Professionals week in Kentucky.
Every day, environmental public health professionals from the Department of Public Health and Wellness are on the job ensuring that our city is a safe place. They inspect restaurants, grocery stores, supermarkets, schools, hotels, motels, mobile home parks, public swimming pools, tattoo studios, septic systems, and locations identified by police as methamphetamine labs. They are on call 24 hours a day to respond to the release of hazardous materials anywhere in our community. They investigate reports of animal bites and control mosquito populations to guard against such diseases as West Nile virus and St. Louis encephalitis. They investigate complaints of violations of Louisville’s Smoke Free law.
“Environmental public health professionals are intrinsic to our efforts to protect the health and safety of Louisville citizens,” said Public Health and Wellness Director Dr. Adewale Troutman. “They guard against food borne disease by making sure that establishments practice safe food handling. They protect us from a myriad of infectious diseases and keep us safe by such activities as controlling mosquitoes, inspecting swimming pools and overseeing the cleanup of meth labs.”
Last year alone environmental health professionals from the Department of Public Health and Wellness:
• completed nearly 12,000 inspections of permitted food establishments
• collected more than 7,000 water samples
• inspected more than 3,400 public facilities (pools, hotels, tattoo parlors, etc.)
• handled more than 1100 reports of animal bites
• completed 1,719 mosquito inspections, 75 hours fogging
• responded to 175 hazardous materials incidents ( 82 were related to meth labs or illegal drugs)
• conducted more than 11,000 tests of blood lead levels in children
In observance of Environmental Public Health Professionals week, graduate students from the University of Louisville School of Public Health and Information Sciences will shadow environmental public health professionals from the Department of Public Health and Wellness as the environmentalists make their daily rounds.
Local media reporters are also invited to accompany inspectors. Reporters will be able to go on inspections of restaurants, hotels and motels, swimming pools or tattoo and body art studios. Contact Dave Langdon at 574-6528 or 432-2916 to make arrangements.
Note to Assignment Editors:
Reporters are invited to go on inspections of restaurants, hotels and motels, swimming pools or tattoo and body art studios. Contact Dave Langdon at 574-6528 or 432-2916 to make arrangements.