April 23, 2012
Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Division of Public Health Services, Bureau of Laboratory Services is recognizing National Laboratory Professionals Week, April 22–28, 2012. The New Hampshire Public Health Laboratories (NH PHL) is the only laboratory in the State that performs laboratory testing exclusively for the general well being of all of its citizens and visitors.
During National Laboratory Professionals Week, the NH PHL will celebrate the great strides it has made in its 111th year, since its inception in 1901. Events are planned throughout the week including a walk for NH Public Health Laboratories awareness and a lobby display in the DHHS building on Hazen Drive. The display will showcase different program areas and a museum display of antique laboratory equipment.
The NH PHL protects the public's health in New Hampshire through responsive, unbiased, quality laboratory testing; actively participating in national and international surveillance networks; and improving the quality of health and laboratory services in both the public and private sector. The NH PHL is a team who coordinates with its partners and stakeholders to guide New Hampshire to a healthier Granite State.
"We want to take this opportunity to honor the work of our public health laboratorians who are dedicated employees ready to respond to critical incidents such as disease outbreaks, newly emergent diseases, product contamination and water quality,” said Dr. José Montero, Director of Public Health at DHHS. “The Public Health Labs employ the latest molecular, genetic and computer technologies for the purpose of disease outbreak investigation, readiness for bioterrorism, and applied public health research. Our employees are well trained and dedicated to their jobs and in serving the people of New Hampshire.”
The employees of the NH PHL include: food microbiologists, who assure our food safety by analyzing dairy products, shellfish, seawater and other food products for microbiological agents, such as Salmonella, E. coli, and paralytic shellfish poisoning (Red Tide); chemists and toxicologists, who detect chemicals such as mercury, arsenic, lead, and nutrient compounds in a variety of samples; clinical microbiologists, and virologists, who assist healthcare providers in diagnosing infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, sexually transmitted diseases, vaccine-preventable, and bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections; and radiological chemists who analyze radiation levels in environmental samples such as air, water, soil, sand, sediment, vegetation, milk, fish, lobster, mussels, and other foods and tritium in surface and ground water.
For more information on the NH PHL, visit the Public Health Laboratories testing page at http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/lab/index.htm and the Water Analysis Testing page at http://des.nh.gov/organization/commissioner/lsu/categories/overview.htm.