COVID-19 response

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Special Advisory Committee on COVID-19

Guided by the Federal, Provincial and Territorial (FPT) Public Health Response Plan for Biological Events, the Public Health Network (PHN) mobilizes coordinated action and response efforts in times of an urgent public health event of national concern.

In January 2020, the PHN Council activated the (FPT) Special Advisory Committee (SAC) on COVID-19. Due to the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the activation of the SAC on COVID-19 has resulted in the pause of regular PHN business while dealing with the COVID-19 response.

The mandate of the SAC on COVID-19 is to advise the Conference of FPT Deputy Ministers of Health on the coordination, public health policy and technical content related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The SAC on COVID-19 is composed of members of both the PHN Council and the Council of Chief Medical Officers of Health.

Within the SAC on COVID-19 governance structure are several groups that undertake public health technical work and collaboration. The SAC brings together senior FPT public health officials, experts and Indigenous organizations to support the COVID-19 response, including the:

Technical Advisory Committee

The TAC is focused on:

The TAC:

Logistics Advisory Committee

The LAC is a forum for collaborative FPT discussions and joint decision making on issues such as:

The LAC engages with the public health and health emergency management sectors to coordinate and share information from a wide range of experts from:

Public Health Network Communications Group

The Public Health Network Communications Group (PHN CG):

Communication activities are coordinated through the PHN CG, thus enabling FPT governments to align their communications strategies.

Public Health Working Group on Remote and Isolated Communities

The Public Health Working Group on Remote and Isolated Communities:

Work to date

The SAC on COVID-19 is guided by the FPT Public Health Response Plan for Biological Events and the Canadian Pandemic Influenza Preparedness: Planning Guidance for the Health Sector.

Given the novel nature of COVID-19 and scope of the FPT coordination of Canada's public health response, the SAC on COVID-19 developed the FPT Public Health Response Plan for the Ongoing Management of COVID-19. This response plan outlines the FPT pandemic:

Since its inception, the SAC has been the engine of the pan-Canadian public health response to COVID-19, with many contributions. This includes national guidance, and communications and technical public health deliverables in the following areas:

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