THO Manual

The Environmental Health Division at the Health Department provides technical support and training opportunities for Town Health Officers (THOs), including the THO Manual. The THO Manual is a key resource for your role as a THO, providing information on your statutory authority and the topics you are likely to encounter. 

The Health Department strongly recommends all THOs review the manual closely and refer to it regularly.

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The most recent version of the THO Manual, linked below, is from 2019. In 2024, the Environmental Health Division is revising the THO Manual to be up to date with the current guidance and legal authorities. The updated sections will be posted in the table below as they are completed. 

Please contact the Environmental Health Division with questions about this manual at [email protected] or 800-439-8550.

  1. Please refer to the updated sections in the table first.
  2. If you don't see what you're looking for there, refer to the 2019 THO manual

For all other THO documents, go to the Forms & Resources for Town Health Officers page 

For concerns about health or safety issues in rental housing, contact the Division of Fire Safety

Updated 2024 Sections of the THO Manual

Click on a section title to view or download the most up-to-date section of the THO Manual.

section #Section Titletopics included


THO AppointmentsAppointment Process, Training, Deputy Health Officers


THO Roles and ResponsibilitiesInspections and investigations, selectboard


What is a Public Health Hazard?Public vs private health hazards


THO Enforcement ToolsVoluntary compliance, health orders, emergency health orders, civil enforcement


Animal Bites and Rabies TestingBite investigation, animal confinement, dog on dog bites, rabies testing


THOs and Infectious DiseasesMosquito and tickborne diseases, prevention measures


Outdoor Air QualityOpen burning, permits


Drinking WaterPrivate drinking water testing, boil water notices, flooding and droughts


Lead PaintVermont Lead Law, IRC practices, RRPM activities, prohibited work practices


AsbestosAsbestos assessment, demolition, renovation


Heat & Heat-Related IllnessesHeat safety, cooling centers, hot weather preparedness
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Important Supplemental Documents

2024 Rental Housing Inspection Update

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