BH.05.APR1019.R02- Emergency Management Update 2018

Report To: Human Resources Committee, Board of Health
Submitted by: Dr. Nicola Mercer, Medical Officer of Health & CEO
April 10, 2019


(a) That the Human Resources Committee makes recommendation to the Board of Health to receive this report, for information.


This Report provides an update on key Emergency Management Activities that occurred in 2018.


  • WDGPH maintains an established and comprehensive emergency management program. The purpose of the program is to equip the Agency to prepare, respond and recover from any of the following:
    • community health emergencies;
    • internal emergencies; and
    • disruptions that may impact the ability of agency to carry out its regular business.
  • This program flows from the Emergency Management Foundational Standard and the Emergency Management Guideline in the Ontario Public Health Standards (OPHS).

Operational Plan Objectives

Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) recognizes that a prompt, efficient response to emergency situations and disruptions is an important component of maintaining the health and safety of all employees and the communities we serve. It is a key Agency objective to ensure that the organization is ready to respond effectively to a wide range of emergencies or disruptions, at any given time. WDGPH is committed to maintaining a comprehensive emergency management program

2018 Accomplishments:

  • Completed the revision of section B.1 - Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment of the Emergency Response Plan.
  • Completed the revision of section D. - Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) of the Emergency Response Plan.
  • The entire Emergency Response Plan has been completely reviewed, revised and updated to a new version - v.7., with the exception of section G. - Mass Vaccination Plan, which is under a more detailed review.
  • Increased community partner awareness regarding emergency management and public health through emergency awareness events, meetings and exercises. These deliverables included participation in: Wellington County emergency planning meetings and exercises, Dufferin County emergency exercises and a training event at the City of Guelph’s Emergency Preparedness Day.
  • Provided Emergency Management training to the Senior Leadership Team and Managers covering a range of issues related to: 1) Emergency Management, 2) the Incident Management System (IMS), 3) WDGPH Emergency Response Plan, 4) WDGPH IMS activation process, and 5) IMS roles of the Emergency Control Group.
  • Activated the Emergency Response Plan/IMS twice in the 2018 year to manage two internal disruptions: 1) Flu Response Mass Vaccination, February 2018 and 2) Multi Event IMS Response TB, Hep A and Hep C, August 2018. Having an internal lived experience from disruptions or emergencies fulfills the requirement of an exercise every 3 years based on the disruption responses the following were identified as some of the areas of strength and areas for future review.

Areas of Strength: WDGPH responded and adapted quickly to the events using IMS, clinics were mobilized quickly, positive public perspective/appreciation and implementation of a call centre helped manage the events.

Areas for Future Review: The need for a school-related public health incident communications process, better understanding of IMS roles during events, improved data collection method and improved internal communications during events.


The Ontario Public Health Standards requires that boards of health:

Shall effectively prepare for emergencies to ensure 24/7 timely, integrated, safe, and effective response to, and recovery from emergencies with public health impacts, in accordance with ministry policy and guidelines 1.


1. Ontario. Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. Ontario Public Health Standards 2018. Toronto, ON: Queen’s Printer for Ontario; 2019 [effective Jan 1 2018; revised July 1 2018]. Available from:… [PDF].

Related Reports

IMS Mass Influenza Immunization Response - BH.01.JUN0618.R16
FLU IMS Communications Report – BH.01.APR0418.R11
Influenza Vaccine Clinics - BH.01.APR0418.C08
Emergency Preparedness Update 2017 - BH.01.FEB0718.C01




Prepared by: David George, Emergency Preparedness Health & Safety Officer

Reviewed by: David Kingma, Director, Administrative Services

Approved by: Dr. Nicola Mercer, Medical Officer of Health & CEO