More details about the funding of public health services in Ontario are emerging. The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) had a teleconference with the 35 health units in the province on Thursday April 18, 2019. It was announced the current 75% provincial/25% municipal cost sharing relationship will be altered immediately. It will begin with a 70/30 provincial/municipal split next year. It will move to 60/40 for municipalities with a greater than one million population.
As many of you are aware, the Ontario Provincial government announced their 2019 Budget “Protecting What Matters Most”. An unexpected component of the budget was the reduction of the number of public health units in the province from 35 to 10. Of note is the language of regional public health entities and regional boards of health – a movement away from public health units. A common governance model will be implemented along with these boards by 2020-2021. The rationale provided is that the current system has public health units outside of the health care system.
Congratulations to Steven Lam, one of three receipts of this year’s National Collaborating Centres for Public Health (NCCPH) NCCPH Knowledge Translation Awards. This award recognizes the efforts of graduate students in Canada for their outstanding work in knowledge translation.
Alex Sawatzky successfully defend her PhD work on December 16, 2018. Her excellent and interesting work titled "The Best Scientists are the People That's out There”: Inuit-Led Integrated Surveillance for Place-Based Health Adaptation to Climate Change" was the first in the field of Public Health within the Department of Poulation Medicine. Alex's unique blend of art and science will serve her well into the future.
The Ontario Veterinary College Alumni Association continues to provide funding for the Dr. Robert Clarke Public Health Prize, awarded to the student with the best poster. There were many great posters on display at the 9th Annual MPH Public Health Forum, but there could only be one winner. This year, Robbie D’Addazio was awarded this prize.
Each year, the National Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health reviews public health student submissions that seek to develop awareness and promote critical analysis of environmental health issues by creating a brief evidence review.
I am now in the final week of my practicum placement at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) working in the Animal Health and Welfare Branch Veterinary Sciences Unit. I have learned so much during my time here and have gained an incredible appreciation of the important role that veterinary science plays in public health. I was able to gain an entirely new perspective by shifting away from a human-centric view of public health and focused more on veterinary issues.
Writing this blog post, it’s hard to believe I have entered the final week of my practicum placement at the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). As a quick recap, I have been working in one of the Guelph, ON PHAC offices over the past four months. My primary project has focused on developing a manuscript looking at different drinking and recreational water exposures across Canada.
My summer at Oxford County Public Health may be finished, but the valuable experiences that I have absorbed along the way will last forever.
The purpose of my practicum project was to better understand the changes that occurred to the food premises inspection workload (i.e., number of food premises inspections) in Oxford County as a result of the provincial modifications to the risk assessment tool instituted in 2015.
In an institution that honours “knowledge, innovation, and solutions,” I have had the privilege of being surrounded and influenced by leaders seeking to create meaningful change in the global world. For the past two and a half months I have been finding my own path towards greater impact, whilst completing my practicum at the International Development Research Centre’s (IDRC) Food, Environment, and Health (FEH) and Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Program.