SALGA briefs media at Municipal Health Services Summit, 26 Feb

SALGA North West to brief members of the media at its provincial Municipal Health Services Summit (MHS) 2020, Orion Safari Lodge, Rustenburg

Municipal Health Services are a legislated mandate of District Municipalities in terms of Sections 84 (1) (i) of the Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998. Municipal Health Services are defined in terms of the National Health Act 61 of 2003 as inclusive of water quality monitoring, food control, waste management, health surveillance of premises, surveillance and prevention of communicable disease excluding immunization, vector control, environmental pollution control, disposal of the dead and chemical safety but excludes port health, malaria control and hazardous substances. In addition to the nine functions of MHS as defined above, the scope of practice for environmental health, EHPs are also responsible for Health and Hygiene, Education, Environmental health law enforcement services, conducting environmental health impact assessments amongst others. Furthermore, section 32 of the National Health Act confirms the services to be provided as a responsibility of the district and metropolitan municipalities.

The primary purpose of the MHS includes amongst others to: Present the state of environmental/municipal health services and discuss areas for improvement(s) To discuss and clarify the roles and responsibilities of the Department of Health and Department of Cooperative Governance, Human Settlement and Traditional Affairs (COGHSTA) in municipal health services Discuss funding challenges and recommend possible funding models Explore ways in which the training needs of EHPs can be addressed. To enhance the knowledge of EHPs through (the) sharing of information from academia and other experts in the field of environmental health.

This second annual provincial summit is hosted under the theme: Placing municipal health services at the heart of communities and in custody of local government and it feeds into the National SALGA summit and other relevant platforms on environmental health.

Furthermore attendance is expected to be at least 200 delegates, ranging from MECs, Environmental Health Practitioners from Province and district municipalities, district Mayors and relevant MMCs, other government departments and institutions of higher learning.

The Summit will reflect, discuss and resolve on the following issues amongst others: Development and adoption of a roadmap towards improvement of environmental/municipal health services in the province Improved intergovernmental cooperation on municipal health services delivery Capacity building on environmental health related topics Visible role by the Provincial Department of COGHSTA in municipal health services Implementation of summit resolutions by stakeholders. Seamless and improved provision of municipal health services

Source: Government of South Africa