The Environmental Health Division of the Van Wert County General Health District conducts various activities geared toward preserving and improving public health in Van Wert County through protection from environmental health hazards. This is done by regulation of private drinking water supplies and sewage disposal systems, as well as inspection of public food establishments, schools, swimming pools and campgrounds. In addition to these public facilities, the Environmental Health Division is responsible for inspection of manufactured home parks, solid waste disposal facilities, infectious waste generators, and tattoo and body piercing establishments. Finally, the Environmental Health Division conducts nuisance complaint investigations, rabies prevention activities, surveillance for West Nile Virus, and provides consultation and advice to the public on various other environmental health-related issues.
Environmental Health inspections and investigations are conducted by Registered Sanitarians, as required by Ohio Revised Code Chapter 4736. A sanitarian is a professional who performs educational, investigational, technical, or administrative duties requiring specialized knowledge and skills in the field of environmental health science. In order to achieve Registered Sanitarian status, one must first complete a four-year college degree with emphasis in science. When the graduate begins work in the environmental health field, he or she becomes registered as a Sanitarian-In-Training. The Sanitarian-In-Training must work in the environmental health field under the supervision of a Registered Sanitarian for a period of at least two years and pass an examination covering all areas of environmental health in order to become a Registered Sanitarian. All Registered Sanitarians and Sanitarians-In-Training must complete a minimum of 18 hours of continuing education annually in order to keep their registration current.