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EHA : Annual Review and Yearbook 2008
Branch Presidents' Reports Victorian Branch (continued) Northwest EHO Network The North West Region continued to hold quarterly meetings at a variety of venues including Wedderburn, Swan Hill, Horsham and Bendigo. The tradition of a combined meeting between the North West and Central Highlands Regions was also upheld. The meetings were well attended by all Council’s in the region. The predominant issues discussed by the group were unsatisfactory sample results of deli meats, food sampling in general, VCEC report, pandemic influenza planning, immunisation, domestic wastewater management plans and wastewater disposal systems, prosecutions, and general complaints and food safety issues different Council’s faced. A variety of guest speakers attended our meetings to discuss issues common to rural Councils. Speakers and topics included the following; 1. Kevin from Aquatec Environmental Systems focused on low pressure sewer systems for more difficult areas, small blocks, high risk environment areas and pumps into a treatment system/sewer 2. Alissa Heard from Campaspe Shire Council spoke about dealing with the Scout Jamboree held at Elmore and ensuring health risks were minimised. 3. Heather Haines and Leanne Johnson provided an update on the Food Safety Unit (including Water Guidelines Feedback) and State Food Sampling Group Update. 4. Stacey Rowe, Team Leader CDCU introduced herself to the group and provided an update on Unit activities. All speakers provided important information to the group members. A big thank you to the host Councils for their fabulous hospitality. I would also like to thank the group members for their attendance and contribution at the meetings. Their eagerness to share experiences, information and advice at every meeting is greatly appreciated by all. The regional group meetings provide valuable networking opportunities and support professional development for members. I look forward to continuing relationships and meeting new people in our profession at the 2008/09 meetings. melanie Holt mAIEH Northwest EHO Network Secretary Gippsland Regional Group The Gippsland Region once again held quarterly meetings at Taralgon, which were all well attended by members. These meetings provided an excellent discussion ground for many issues. The main issues discussed were the high numbers of infectious disease cases, pandemic influenza planning, septic tanks and domestic wastewater management plans, VCEC report, food sampling and general complaints and food safety issues. Reports were also given to the group from the various SIG’s. Each meeting was also attended by the REHO who gave an update on DHS activities and infectious disease statistics. The meetings were also attended by some valuable guest speakers including: n Garry Kay, EPA – Domestic Wastewater Management n Stacey Rowe, DHS – Enteric Disease Control, including review of Gastrointestinal Investigation Guidelines update n Leanne Johnson, DHS – Water Guidelines n Olga Koskie, M & K Lawyers – Registration and NonCompliance with Food Act Another popular guest speaker for the year was Robert Atwell. Robert is an EHO for the RAAF Base in East Sale. Robert gave a great insight to the world of an EHO in the air force and impressed everyone with his great tales of EHO life at the front line. The Gippsland Region also has a separate immunisation group, called the Gippsland Immunisation Reference Group (GIRG). This group meets on a regular basis to share information around the regions and to discuss ways of promoting immunisation and provide feedback on what is happening at the State level. The group includes EHOs, nurses and representatives from the divisions of General Practice. The group’s contribution to immunisation in the region is outstanding and we thank them for their great work in this area. I would like to thank all the members for their contribution throughout yet another busy year and look forward to another successful year in the region. laura Tucker mAIEH Gippsland Regional Group Secretary EHA ANNUAL REPORT 2008 45