Wayne Watkis is Public Health Inspector of the yearSunday, November 06, 2016
ST JAMES, Jamaica (JIS) – Acting Veterinary Public Health Inspector for the St Ann Health Department Wayne Watkis, is the 2016 Public Health Inspector of the Year.
He received the award during the recently held 70th annual educational conference of the Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors, (JAPHI) at the Grand Palladium Jamaica and Lady Hamilton Resort and Spa in Hanover.
After being praised for his work in the field and accepting his prizes Watkis said that the recognition serves as motivation for him to work harder.
“It feels good. It is rewarding to know that all the effort that you have put in day after day, at least somebody is watching and is aware of what you are doing and the impact that it is making on the community…It (is) a form of motivation for me,” he said.
Watkis, who has been a practising Public Health Inspector for nine years, has acted in the position of Veterinary Public Health Inspector on two occasions from 2009 to 2012 and again from 2015 to present.
As part of his daily activities, he monitors among other things milk plants and egg farms, coordinates the licensing processes for butchers, conducts inspections, and undertake health education among small poultry farmers.
Watkis said that as a relatively young member of the profession, he is content to continue performing his various tasks for now, but ultimately his sights are set on obtaining professional qualification as a Veterinary Public Health Inspector.
“Right now my ultimate goal is to continue doing what I am doing in terms of making an impact on society and ultimately to get a Masters (degree) in some animal related course of study. There is the veterinary course which is being offered in Trinidad…it is a specialised area for Veterinary Public Health Officers,” the 2016 Public Health Inspector of the year said.
A native of Brown’s Town, St Ann, Watkis, a past student of the Brown’s Town High School, thinks the job as a Public Health Inspector was ordained for him by a higher authority, given his experiences after graduating from high school
“To be honest, it is like God had helped to steer me in this path because when I finished high school, I was not sure what I wanted to do, so I ended up doing natural sciences at the College of Agriculture, Science and Education,” he said.
“I (then) spent my internship at the Public Health office in Brown’s Town, and it was (while) I was there and in observing the work of the Public Health Inspectors…I said this seems interesting …and it was at that time I submitted my application to the University of Technology and I started to grow and get more passionate about the profession,” he added.
Looking back at his experience in the field, Watkis is confident that it is a fulfilling profession where persons with the passion to serve their fellow citizens can excel.
“Public Health is a profession which is really fulfilling. If you want to make an impact on the lives of people, Public Health is the area to go,” he stated.
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