03 April 2020 – Powers and capacity of Public Health Units increased

Type of Intervention: New Tool / Service / Body, Regulation
Sectors Involved: Health
Intervention Categories: Education and awareness; Finance policy and financial aid; Financial aid to health services
Level of Jurisdiction: Ontario
Lead People/Agency: Ministry of Health, Minister of Health (Christine Elliot)
Chief Medical Officer of Health (Dr. David Williams)
Regional public health units would implement this order

Overview: The Ontario government is issuing a new order to allow public health units to significantly increase their capacity to support their fight against COVID-19. Ontario issued a new order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act that provides public health units the authority to expand their capacity to implement critical public health functions such as case and contact management. The province also launched a new online portal for the public to access their COVID-19 test results. The portal provides fast and secure online access to results to ease pressures on public health units and frontline workers.
Full details here: https://news.ontario.ca/mohltc/en/2020/04/ontario-increasing-public-health-units-capacity-to-stop-covid-19.html

Type of Justification: Advice of INTERNAL government advisory committee or group, Perception of an increased threat
Source of Evidence or Justification: Sub-national, Chief Medical Officer of Health; Sub-national, provincial legislation
Evidence/Justification: This order supports the Chief Medical Officer of Health’s recommendation for all public health units to increase contact tracing and management measures in response to increasing cases of community transmission (perception of increased threat). Under Section 22 of the Health Protection and Promotion Act, medical officers of health are encouraged to use their authority to ensure isolation of cases and contacts of COVID-19.