April 27, 2017 –  Free Community Event on Emergency Preparedness Recreates Realistic Crisis Scenario

Are you ready for an emergency the next time it strikes? That will be the topic residents are invited to learn more about at “Your Worst Nightmare”, a free community event taking place on Tuesday, May 9, 2017 from 7:00-8:30 p.m. at the Evinrude Centre, 911 Monaghan Road, Peterborough.

“Emergencies can happen at any time, so we want to make sure our residents know how to prepare to keep themselves and their families safe,” said Edwina Dusome, Manager of Infectious Disease Programs and Emergency Preparedness at Peterborough Public Health.  “We’ve created this interactive event so participants can experience what it’s like when a crisis hits to help them understand what they need to do.  Residents will also learn how emergencies can impact community agencies and the services they deliver.”

The event features mock news segments produced by CHEX TV that describe a realistic emergency scenario as it unfolds. In between video news segments, local experts will discuss emergency preparedness tips and answer questions from the audience.  Presenters include:

  • Jodi DeNoble, Manager, Emergency Management, Insurance and Risk, City of Peterborough
  • Craig Jones, Acting Superintendent of Emergency Management, County of Peterborough
  • Christina Murphy, Manager, Infection Prevention and Control, Peterborough Regional Health Centre
  • Chris Pittens, Program Manager, Emergency Management Field Operations, Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management
  • Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Officer of Health, Peterborough Public Health
  • Mark Troughton, Chief and Medical Director for Emergency Department, Peterborough Regional Health Centre

This event is free and open to everyone.  To register online, visit www.eventbrite.ca and search for “Your Worst Nightmare” or find the link at www.peterboroughpublichealth.ca.  This event is organized in recognition of Emergency Preparedness Week (May 7-13) by the Peterborough Interagency Outbreak Planning Team in partnership with Peterborough Public Health.


For further information, please contact:

Gillian Pacey
Public Health Inspector
705-743-1000, ext. 224

April 19 – To view the meeting summary for the April 12 Board of Health Meeting click image below:

170412 Board of Health Meeting Summary – April

170419 BOH meeting summary

April 18, 2017 – Low-Cost Rabies Clinics on Saturday, April 29

Peterborough Public Health is teaming up with local veterinarians to help combat rabies. On Saturday, April 29 from 12 noon until 2:00 p.m., there will be multiple clinics running across the County and City to help protect pet dogs and cats against the disease. These vaccinations are low-cost at $25 per pet, cash only.  Dogs must be leashed and cats caged or restrained.

Provincial law requires that all cats and dogs over three months of age in Peterborough City and County must be vaccinated for rabies. Vaccinations protect pets from rabies and helps protect your family, if your pet is bitten by a rabid wild animal.

“We hope that the community will take advantage of these low-cost rabies clinics, which are being set up at multiple sites across the County and City,” said Atul Jain, Manager of Environmental Health, who oversees the rabies prevention and control program for Peterborough Public Health. “Not only is vaccinating your cats and dogs the law, but it is the easiest way to protect your pets and family from rabies. While it’s rare, when humans develop rabies from infected animals it is almost 100% fatal.”

While the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry had significantly reduced the number of wildlife rabies cases in Ontario through its Rabies Control Program, in 2016 the number of cases rose significantly. As of December 31, 2016, there were 288 confirmed cases of fox and raccoon strain rabies in Ontario, compared to just 24 cases in 2015. Pet vaccination and the provincial baiting program are still required to keep rabies at bay for the protection of Ontario families.

Rabies is a deadly disease of the central nervous system that affects humans and other mammals. The virus is concentrated in the saliva of a rabid animal and can spread through a bite, cut or scratch, or if the saliva comes in contact with the moist tissues of the mouth, nose or eyes. There is no known treatment for rabies once the symptoms appear.  The disease cannot be treated, but it can be prevented through vaccination.

For more information about the low-cost rabies clinics or to find a clinic location near you, please visit www.peterboroughpublichealth.ca and click on Rabies Clinics or call the Peterborough Public Health at 705-743-1000, ext. 232.


For further information, please contact:
Atul Jain, Manager, Environmental Health
705-743-1000, ext. 259



April 12, 2017 – Serving 2.5 Million Breakfasts and Snacks Last Year to Local Students

Hundreds of Volunteers Recognized at Appreciation Luncheon

Today, more than 200 volunteers were honoured for their amazing contributions that make school breakfast and snack programs possible in schools throughout Peterborough County and City.

“We are honoured to celebrate all of the incredible volunteers who help to make Student Nutrition Programs in so successful,” said Susan McEwen, Chair of the Food for Kids Steering Committee. “Without them, these programs wouldn’t exist.”

“Last year Food for Kids served over 2.5 million healthy breakfasts and snacks to 17,364 students in 48 local schools.  Over 1,000 volunteers gave 1,100 hours each week to programs to feed kids for better learning,” said Angela Fuchs, Food for Kids Student Nutrition Program Coordinator.  “Volunteers contribute in many roles.  Some do grocery shopping, or picking up food.  Others help with food prep, serving meals or fundraising. Every contribution makes a positive impact to student success in the classroom, day in and day out.”

The Food for Kids partnership supports 48 school breakfast programs. Nutritious foods are served by volunteers in a friendly, welcoming environment.  “There are many reasons why kids arrive at school with empty stomachs.  Long bus rides, skipped breakfasts, and not enough food at home are some of them. Universal breakfast and snack programs help students get the energy they need to focus and learn,” said Lauren Kennedy, Registered Dietitian at Peterborough Public Health.  “Healthy foods such as vegetables, fruit, cheese, yogurt, and whole grains help kids get the nutrition they need for the busy school day.”

Today’s luncheon recognized the contributions and dedication of Food for Kids’ many volunteers.  There will also be 44 Student Nutrition Program volunteers honoured at the Ontario Volunteer Service Awards in May, for two, five, ten, fifteen, and twenty years of service.  Susan McEwen expressed her sincere gratitude for the more than 150 community partners and sponsors who provide support.

“Thank you to all who contribute time, food, funding, supplies and space. Food for Kids needs you! Thank you for making an important impact on kids in our community.”

To get in touch with Food for Kids, call 705-743-1000 or go to www.foodforkidsptbo.ca.


For further information, please contact:

Lauren Kennedy, MScFN, RD
Registered Dietitian
705-743-1000, ext. 233


April 12, 2017 – Free Event on April 26 for Parents and Caregivers Clarifies Misconceptions

Peterborough Healthy Families invites parents and caregivers to a free presentation entitled “Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD): Dispelling the Myths” on Wednesday, April 26 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Peterborough Public Health, 185 King St., in downtown Peterborough.

The guest speaker will be Shelly Lamain who has worked as an ASD consultant with Kinark Child and Family Services for 13 years.  ASD is a common label that is increasingly used in society today, yet myths still remain around this complex diagnosis.  These myths can lead to misconceptions and stigma, which can create barriers to inclusion.  This session will differentiate between the common myths and facts about ASD.

Ms. Lamain is an expert trainer on topics related to ASD and Applied Behaviour Analysis. In her current role she supports students with ASD when they transition to school from more intensive services.

This event is open to the general public, free to attend and wheelchair accessible.  Metered street parking is free after 6:00 p.m. The King St. parking garage is free when leaving after 7:00 p.m. Accessible parking is located right beside Peterborough Public Health.


For further information, please contact:

Leisa Baker, Public Health Nurse
705-743-1000, ext. 312

April 11, 2017 –  Peterborough Public Health announced today that the Board of Health ratified an agreement reached with OPSEU Local 327 at its March 8, 2017 meeting.

Earlier in March, this deal was ratified by OPSEU members, thereby securing a new five-year contract ending March 31, 2021.

“We are very pleased with the commitment to collaborate effectively demonstrated by OPSEU and Peterborough Public Health in this negotiation. The outcome is something we can be proud of because this agreement reflects many of the objectives both parties wanted to achieve. Our focus now is for our employees to continue delivering the great programs and services that make this community one of the best in Ontario,” said Larry Stinson, Director of Operations for Peterborough Public Health. “This agreement is a win-win, because it supports our high-quality programs and services to continue and was negotiated with fairness and equity in mind.”

The OPSEU members at Peterborough Public Health include Public Health Nutritionists, Health Promoters, Infant Development Workers and Dental Hygienists.



For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence

Communications Manager

705-743-1000, ext. 391

April 7, 2017 – Location: Hiawatha First Nation, Administration Building

Media and the community are advised that the Board of Health will meet on Wednesday, April 12, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. at Hiawatha First Nation in the Council Chambers, Lower Hall, Administration Building, 123 Paudash Street.

To download the agenda and the online board package, please visit:


The meeting is open to the community and members of the media.


For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence
Communications Manager
705-743-1000, ext. 391

April 7, 2017 –  The lack of affordable dental care in the province was the main agenda item as more than 60 representatives from across Ontario met today to call for government investment in publicly funded oral health care for adults and seniors living on low incomes.

At the annual symposium of the Ontario Oral Health Alliance, participants heard that between two and three million people in Ontario do not go to a dentist, mainly due to high costs of private dentistry.

Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Officer of Health for Peterborough Public Health who presented at the symposium, noted that dental cavities are one of the most common chronic diseases, yet OHIP does not cover oral health care.

“Oral health is an important component of overall health and wellbeing. As a Public Health Specialist, I can attest to the link between poor oral health and chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. We are doing our best to ensure that no child goes without treatment, but we have a problem if up to three million people in Ontario don’t have access to basic dental care services due to cost.”

“We have seen investments in publicly funded infrastructure to deliver oral health care to vulnerable Ontarians but we need to do better,” said Dr. Salvaterra. “By supporting municipalities to invest in fluoridation of their drinking water, we can prevent 30% of dental decay across all ages. Better prevention would allow us to reinvest savings into treating those who aren’t able to afford the cost of dental care.”

Ontario has a public dental program, Healthy Smiles Ontario, for children and youth under 18 years of age in very low income families. There’s also a patchwork of basic dental programs for people receiving social assistance. There are no public dental health programs for low income adults and seniors.

Local research has found that 43% of people in Peterborough City and County say that cost is a barrier to receiving dental treatment. The Peterborough Poverty Reduction Network set up a Dental Treatment Assistance Fund in 2007 to help low-income adults and seniors get emergency dental care.

“We wouldn’t expect people with broken limbs to rely on volunteer doctors. So it’s frustrating for people with dental pain and infection to have to rely on charity to fund emergency dental care,” said Brenda Dales, Executive Director of the Peterborough Social Planning Council. “We need the provincial government to put some money where our mouths are – by investing in public dental programs for the adults and seniors in our communities living on low and fixed incomes so that we can all have healthy mouths.”

“Ontario must do better,” said Anna Rusak, Coordinator of the Ontario Oral Health Alliance. “We’re calling on the provincial government to fast-track the promise to extend public dental programs to low-income adults and seniors by 2025, and deliver the program in Community Health Centres, Aboriginal Health Access Centres, and Public Health Units where many vulnerable people already access health and social services.”

Research shows that most people living on low income prefer to be treated in public dental clinics where they are welcomed and don’t experience stigma. Many private dentists refuse to accept people on social assistance and are frustrated when people cannot pay or miss appointments.

To learn more about some of innovative examples of public dental programs that are meeting the needs of vulnerable children and adults at the Port Hope Community Health Centre, as well as local advocacy efforts to expand services in Woodstock, Niagara Region, and Peel, contact us today.

The Ontario Oral Health Symposium was co-hosted by the Ontario Oral Health Alliance and Peterborough Public Health.



To arrange an interview with anyone quoted in this release, or to find out more information about oral health campaigns in your community, please contact:

Jason Rehel, 416-817-9518