Public health inspectors say they take complaints of non-compliance seriously
President of the Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors, (JAPHI), Karen Brown, addressed a recently held JIS Think Tank at the agency's Montego Bay Regional Office.

President of the Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors (JAPHI), Karen Brown, has moved to assure that all reports made about non-compliant food establishments are taken seriously. 

Brown was addressing a Jamaica Information Service Think Tank which was held at the agency's Montego Bay, St James regional office recently.

“When a report is made on a food handling establishment, it is considered almost like an emergency, where it is investigated within 24 hours, that is what is required,” Brown stated. 

She said upon inspection, if the findings indicate that there are significant challenges that may compromise public health, then immediate closure can take place, which is then endorsed by the parish medical officer of health.

“Maybe there are some deviations from the requirements that may not be found to be high risk, they may get a warning letter and they may get time, not exceeding 21 days to correct those deficiencies. When the revisit [of the premises] is done, if the [entity] is compliant, then maybe [they] will either be recommended for certification or given the nod of approval,” Brown explained. 

At the same time Brown pointed out that institutions are monitored depending on the nature of the business.

“For example, it is generally required that a school be inspected at least once per quarter, that is the requirement. However, in most instances, these are at least inspected once per year. If there are challenges identified in these facilities, the necessary follow up is done within seven, 21 days and [so forth],” said Brown.

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