Cabinet is currently reviewing submissions for the Allied Health Council. The Council which deals with sanitation, hygiene and water among other factors in environmental health has not been functioning for some time.
Minister of Public Health, Dr. George Norton
The Government Information Agency (GINA) sought Minister of Public Health, Dr. George Norton’s comments on this issue. The minister pointed out that the re-establishing of the local Allied Health Council depends on Cabinet’s review of persons appointed to serve. “We are not certain, but we would try to get this functioning as early as possible. There were some doubts about persons who were recommended to be on the council and that caused a little delay, but I can tell you that every effort would be made to get that on.”
Since 2010, the year of its establishment, the council goes through a process of reconsideration at the level of Cabinet at two-year intervals. In 2014, the Allied Health Professions Act was amended to include health professionals who are under the purview of Environmental Health and Counselling and Testing bodies.
The Official Gazette dated March 24, 2012 indicates that the Act will govern the operations of Environmental Health Officers, Public Health Inspectors, Sanitary Inspectors, Port Health Officers and Environmental Health Assistants.
Minister Norton further added, “It has a life of two years and the new life is supposed to have started in March of this year, but of course the council itself has to be approved by Cabinet. We would have sent that off to Cabinet waiting for an approval.”
Members of the council will usually include the Chief Medical Officer serving as an an ex-officio member, two Allied Health Professionals being appointed as members of the first Council and six representing the professional association, while two others will be from the consumers’ organisations.