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Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Perth District, Huron County Health Units Seek Information From Province

Huron-Perth | by Peter Jackson  

Plan to create regional public health agencies leave questions for soon-to-merge health units.

The provincial government is looking to save costs by creating 10 regional public health agencies by 2021, a year after the scheduled merger of the Huron County and Perth District Health Units.

The Ford government is looking at a two-year savings of $220 million, by slashing the number of public health boards across the province from the current 35.

Huron County Board of Health Chair Dave Jewett says it's important that the new Huron-Perth board be recognized in any revamping of public health administration.

His counterpart in Perth, Kathy Vassilakos warns that health units are the front line of health promotion and disease prevention.

The measure is contained in the Progressive Conservative government's budget, delivered last Thursday.

Perth Medical Officer of Health, Doctor Miriam Klassen says they will continue to talk to the province on the potential effect of the budget move on the planned amalgamation.

Health initiatives led by the area's two health units include:

  • Facilitating community opioid responses
  • Promoting and distributing publicly-funded vaccines
  • Ensuring food and water safety at restaurants, salons and spas, pools, and small drinking water systems
  • Collecting, analyzing and reporting population health information
  • Parenting programs.
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