On March 26, we had the distinct pleasure of meeting Dr. David Williams, the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario. In the past year, Dr. Williams has been cast into the spotlight, helping to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Williams is responsible for leading the public health system as a whole, including advising the government on provincewide public health measures that help to stop the spread of the virus.
Dr. Williams gave us an insightful presentation on Ontario’s public health system. We learned about the legislation that pertains to public health, including the Health Protection and Promotion Act. Dr. Williams also suggested that the health system in Ontario is unique, as it involves shared authority between the provincial and municipal levels. He discussed the role of the Public Health Units present in municipalities, and the way they interact with his office.
Dr. Williams also commented on the COVID-19 virus and the daunting challenge of bringing the pandemic to an end. He suggested that the COVID-19 organism is continually evolving, making it difficult to stay ahead of it. Additionally, he described the challenges of keeping the public engaged and motivated to fight the virus, as we are now more than one year into the pandemic.
Our conversation with Dr. Williams was very interesting and timely. We would like to sincerely thank him for taking the time to meet with us. We really appreciate his work and dedication to leading Ontario’s public health system.