by Jolene Toves
Guam - The Department of Public Health announces proposed changes that could be in store for those applying for health certificates.
If you are seeking employment in an industry that requires a health certificate you need to know that the Department of Public Health's Environmental Division is proposing to change the requirements needed to obtain a health certificate. Environmental Public Health officer administrator Rosanna Rabago said, "What these regulations propose to do is to require a training course for all people who are going to be employed within these facilities that we regulate," she said.
Those who will be affected by the proposed regulations if passed are all newly employed personnel in the food service and manufacturing industries, institutional facilities such as, child care, nursing homes, adult care and correctional facilities. She added, "People who are going to be employed or are currently trying to obtain a health certificate will be required to attend and pass a training course."
Rabago says there will be opportunities to take the test without the training course however all applicants must pass the examination with a 70% grade. If not, the test must be retaken, noting, "The purpose for that is to ensure that all people employed within facilities that we are already currently inspecting posses the necessary knowledge in order to ensure that infectious diseases don't transmit itself from one person to another and also members of the public."
Rabago says the training course will be offered weekly at GCC and requires applicants to pay fifteen dollars for the training course in addition to the ten dollar fee for the health certificate.
According to Rabago for those who are enrolled in the training course an interim health certificate will be provided to allow them to work prior to the scheduled training course. In addition to the proposed training course the regulations will also make changes to authorized parties. She said, "For new applicants we are not going to allow that they have a second party or authorize party to make application for them we are going to require that the actual person come in."
However, Rabago says that for those who are renewing their health certificate a third-party representative will be allowed to act on behalf of the applicant.
It's important to note that these are proposed changes to the regulations and as of now are not in effect - Rabago says the public is invited to share their comments by contacting DPHSS at 735-7221.