Public Health’s Role

The aim of Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health’s (WDGPH) Emergency Response Plan (ERP) is to be prepared to effectively and efficiently respond to any health emergencies that occur within the agency or the community. This is a requirement of the Health Protection and Promotion Act (HPPA) that provides legal authority for boards of health to respond to a public health emergency such as a health hazard or a disease outbreak.

The Ontario Public Health Standards and the Emergency Preparedness Protocol detail the requirements for what must be included in the ERP. The WDGPH Emergency Response Plan Policy also summarizes the key requirements of the Plan. 

WDGPH has an on-call system that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for responding to potential health hazards or incidents. Any emergency situation is communicated immediately to the Medical Officer of Health (MOH), Directors and the management team as necessary.

The Health Protection and Promotion Act also gives authority to the Medical Officer of Health (MOH) to activate the Emergency Response Plan when there are incidents or situations with actual and potential risk to the community. Other relevant legislation pertaining to the emergency plan includes, but is not limited to, the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the relevant municipal bylaws of the County of Wellington, County of Dufferin and the City of Guelph.