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Revista de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 0124-0064

Abstract

AGUDELO-CALDERON, Carlos A et al. Characterization of the training and practice of human talent working in environmental health in Colombia. Rev. salud pública [online]. 2015, vol.17, n.4, pp.552-564. ISSN 0124-0064.  http://dx.doi.org/10.15446/rsap.v17n4.54107.

Objectives To characterize the peculiarities in the training, exercise, and performance of human talent working in environmental health in Colombia. Method Documentary and database reviews. Surveys and semi-structured interviews. Results Approximately 70 % of professionals in the area of environmental health work in health management, food engineering, environmental engineering, sanitary engineering, veterinary medicine, and pharmaceutical chemistry. 63 % of technologists belong to the field of sanitation technology. Only 20 % of surveyed educational institutions apply the competence approach to training to their students and the identification of occupational characteristics in the labor market is only used at the undergraduate level as a criterion of academic analysis and design. Only 20 % of educational institutions identify educational trends in Colombian and or international environmental health as a contribution to their programs. In prospective practices, the following topics to be strengthened were identified: risk factor identfication, measurement, and control; design and implementation of mechanisms for controlling environmental risks; forms of interdisciplinary work between the natural, social and health sciences; preventative and environmental protection measures and the concept of environment (natural, social, and cultural). Conclusion The human talent currently working in environmental health in the country is concentrated in primary care activities (inspection, monitoring and control) and a large spread exists in mission processes and competences, both professionally and technologically. A lack of coordination between the environmental sector and the education sector can be observed. A great diversity exists among the profiles offered by the different educational programs related to environmental health.

Keywords : Environmental health; human resources development; education.

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