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How to Become an Environmental Health Officer

Environmental health officer (EHO) has become a popular job nowadays, making it a very attractive career option. In this blog, you will get to know everything about how to become an Environmental Health Officer.

Table of Contents

What is an Environmental Health Officer? ​

Environmental Health Officers (EHOs) take the responsibilities of protecting public health. They measure risk, regulate and enforce regulations related to health. 

However, they try to decrease health problems and safety issues. EHOs work for both the built and natural environment. They keep our natural environment safe. These officers protect water, air, soil, food etc. For this purpose, they test and control factors that can be damaging to our health. 

Moreover, they work on disease prevention. And create a healthy environment. Undoubtedly, determinants of the environment can play a vital role in the population’s health and well-being. 

So, EHOs are vital for improving the community’s health. Surely, they reduce the chances of disease. EHOs promote good human health and environmental practices. In this blog, you will get to know, how to become an environmental health officer.

How to become an Environmental Health Officer: Education and Qualifications

Firstly, you need to study environmental science, public health or environmental management at your university. And these areas of study must be undertaken within a science background. Getting a bachelor of science in Environmental Health may take four years of study.

Secondly, to get into these courses, you usually need to get your A levels in a science or technological subject. However, education and knowledge in English, mathematics, biology, chemistry and physics are generally required.

Environmental Health Officer at work

Thirdly, some workers have a vocational education and training qualification. Check with institutions for exact entry requirements. Some institutions accept vocational courses for entry too.

Aspiring graduates in England, Wales or Northern Ireland need a degree approved by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH). Students who want to be EHOs can also do some online courses like, Environmental Management System course. It will definitely give you confidence and help you in your career path.

Finally, you will be eligible to join a chartered environmental health practitioner programme. In case you do not have an accredited degree, you will need to do a postgraduate course before getting into the chartered programme and develop in your career.

Summery

To sum it up, you can choose the following routes to become an Environmental Health Officer:

  • Degree in environmental science, approved by the Institute of Environmental Health
  • Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) professional exams
  • Work-based training

Environmental Management Systems Course

Learn to take the responsibility to create sustainable environments and contribute to positive workplaces, communities, and future.

Environmental Management Systems Course

Learn to take the responsibility to create sustainable environments and contribute to positive workplaces, communities, and future.

Key Skills to become an Environmental Health Officer

EHOs need some personal skills as well as educational qualifications. They are pointed below:

  • Strong and clear written and verbal skills
  • Good communication skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Able to analyse and solve problems
  • Able to be firm and strong when making decisions
  • Good negotiation skills
  • Resourceful
  • Tactful and courteous
  • Close attention to detail
  • Able to work as a part of a team and independently

Particularly, jobs are posted on local authority websites. You may find jobs circular in environmental health industry-focused local newspapers too.

However, larger and commercial companies may advertise on national newspaper websites as well as their own websites. Also, A few specialist recruitment agencies also advertise job vacancies.

Is Environmental Health Officer a good career?

Becoming an Environmental Health Officer (EHO) can be the best decision for you. But you have to be brave, confident and have the will to do something for society.

Environmental Health Officer receives a standard salary. Salary ranges can vary depending on many factors. It includes education, academics certifications, additional soft skills, experience in your profession. Indeed, there is a good career path for employees with local authorities.

In short, there are opportunities for promotion and excellence. Enrol in Environmental Management System course for better advancement opportunities in your career.

What does an Environmental Health Officer do?

Although EHOs are responsible for checking businesses and properties. They must take action when any event breaches public health and safety issues.

Environmental Health Officer working On site

Here is a list below, where an Environmental health officer has responsibilities:

Natural Pollution

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Noise control

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Industrial contamination

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Collecting samples

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Pest control method

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Accidents assessment

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Food hygiene

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Cleaning Techniques and Schedule

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Waste management

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Keeping records

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An Environmental Health Professional

Other responsibilities of an EHO:

If you want to become an Environmental Health Officer, you have to know about their duties and responsibilities. 

Basically, the regular tasks of an environmental health officer are diverse. The works can vary from one moment to the other depending on the type of business to deal with. Moreover, they can be assigned by both the private and public sector. Some other responsibilities of EHOs are:

  • Informing employers about issues of environmental health
  • Making reports 
  • Delivering training to the public
  • Investigating complaints from the consumer and general public 
  • Serve legal notices 
  • Provides evidence in court 
  • Liaising with other Companies

While in an inspection, the EHOs will work in accordance with the Environment and Food Law Code of Practice Guidance. Here, the aim is to make sure you meet legal hygiene and safety requirements. They check if the products, services and food you are producing or selling are safe for your consumers.  

During the visit, the responsible officer will talk to you and your employees about your operations. He will ask about your business activities and how you manage safety. He will also look at your safety documents and assess the structure of your premises. 

However, during the time of the inspection, the officer may take photographs, samples as evidence. And if they do, they should explain to you why they are doing this.

What People Gain from Environmental Health officers?

EHOs facilitate a wide range of services to society. Here, they are given below:

  • Provide support and guidance
  • Improved food hygiene rating
  • Good systems and procedures

Where can you work as an Environmental Health Officer?

At the same time, you as an EHO might be working indoors or outdoors, nearby localities, or for a small or medium-sized organisation. As an EHO you may inspect the following places:

  • Restaurants
  • Local farms
  • Supermarkets and large food retailers 
  • Cafes
  • Catering vans
  • Bars
  • Industrial areas
  • Local authorities

What can Environmental Health Officers Do?

Becoming an environmental officer will give you the right to enter and investigate any food business premises. Firstly, you may assess if an offence has been committed under the Food Safety Act. Also, you can arrange interviews with staff as part of the food safety investigation.

An EHO taking Notes at work

As an EHO, you will inspect and rate food hygiene (typically scored out of 5). This will appear on the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme website. If you find the food handling systems and procedures to be poor, you will likely give a lower score. 

Finally, they might be required to make corrections before continuing business further. However, preventing the EHOs from carrying out their work is a criminal offence. 

EHOs can enter and inspect business premises at any reasonable time and day of the week. Moreover, they don’t need an appointment with people, and they have the authority to inquiry others. 

It is essential to strictly follow safety law and regulations at all times. 

Also, depending on the type of business, EHOs visit may be a yearly or biannual routine. It may be more or less frequent. In other words, business owners always have to prepare for an EHO visit.

Environmental Health Officer might also

  • Take samples and photographs of your business for further query.
  • Seize or detain any stuff that they suspect are unfit for eating or using. 
  • Inspect your business documents.

Environmental Management Systems Course

Learn to take the responsibility to create sustainable environments and contribute to positive workplaces, communities, and future.

Environmental Management Systems Course

Learn to take the responsibility to create sustainable environments and contribute to positive workplaces, communities, and future.

Final Thoughts

Environmental health officers make sure homes and workplaces are safe, hygienic and healthy. 

However, you may choose to specialise in air pollution, food safety, waste management, disease control or noise control etc. Also, you might deal with all environmental health issues in your local area or a company.

If you want to become an environmental health officer, and you want to know more about it, Click Here.

May 28, 2021

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