ARCHIVED - The Public Health Agency of Canada – Strategic Plan: 2007 – 2012, Information, Knowledge, Action

 

Message from the Minister of Health

Tony Clement

As Minister of Health, it is my pleasure to present the first Strategic Plan of the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Since its creation in 2004 as a federal Agency within the Health Portfolio, the Public Health Agency of Canada has been unwavering in supporting the Government of Canada. The Agency continues to deliver on its commitment to protect and promote the health and safety of all Canadians. For example, the Agency has made significant movement forward in addressing chronic disease from a public health perspective. The creation of the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer in November 2006, the announcement of the Canadian Heart Health Strategy in October 2006, and the launch of the Lung Health Framework in April 2007 are important advances that respond to the growing burden of chronic disease in Canada. In terms of infectious disease, I announced in January 2007 that the Government of Canada would invest in an ambitious new vaccine research and development facility at the University of Saskatchewan which will significantly enhance Canada's capacity to develop vaccines for both humans and animals. The following month, in February 2007, the Government of Canada announced a partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to commit major new funding to support the Canadian HIV Vaccine Initiative, a new effort to accelerate the development of an HIV/AIDS vaccine and address critical research gaps. These announcements have underscored the important work of the Agency and its commitment to delivering on Government of Canada commitments.

As an affirmation of the important role played by the Agency, and as a sign of this Government's firm and broad commitment to public health, my first piece of federal legislation after becoming Minister of Health was the introduction of Bill C-5, The Public Health Agency of Canada Act. This Act entered into force in December 2006. The Agency operates in concert with and complements the efforts of Health Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and all other members of the Health Portfolio. Together, they help make and keep Canadians one of the healthiest populations in the world.

This Strategic Plan represents an important next step for the Agency. It articulates three major objectives to help realize PHAC's vision and mandate. First, anticipating and responding to Canadians' health needs; second, supporting the Agency's own actions and enhancing its accountability with integrated information and knowledge functions; third, developing the Agency's own internal capacity and ensuring its workforce has the tools and leadership it needs to be most effective.

In pursuing these objectives, the Agency will help the federal government maintain its focus on strengthening public health in our country, and pursue its plan for a stronger Canada based on pillars of accountability, security, environmental protection and strong economic management. The Strategic Plan focuses the Agency on protecting Canadians from chronic disease and from emerging infectious diseases, including pandemic influenza. It emphasizes the importance of addressing the determinants of health and reducing health disparities, and underscores the importance of recognizing linkages between the environment and our collective health. It represents a plan to align resources behind these priorities and ensure the effective interplay between information, knowledge and action.

In addition to supporting the federal government in these priority areas, the Agency will continue to play a powerful role in reducing and guaranteeing wait times. By keeping Canadians safe and by creating the conditions for us all to be healthy, the work of PHAC and the entire public health community in Canada is reducing the burden on the health care system.

In effect, this Strategic Plan establishes priorities in public health and aligns the means to achieve them. I look forward to watching the plan unfold over the next five years as the Agency continues to support the vision we all share: healthy Canadians and communities in a healthier world.

Tony Clement Signature

Tony Clement
Minister of Health


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