ST. JOHN’S, NL – The provincial government wants residents of Newfoundland and Labrador to participate in an online questionnaire that will be used to draft new public health legislation.
According to a news release from the Department of Health and Community Services today, Feb. 21, some parts of the current legislation have not been updated in over 50 years.
Dr. David Allison, the province’s chief medical officer of health, said the public health workforce needs to be supported by laws that have taken a many different individual, community and population health issues and concerns into consideration.
“Modernized public health laws will help us to respond to emerging challenges like the potential for fast moving infectious diseases, the complexity of factors that affect chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer and the impact of technology,” he said.
Health and Community Services Minister John Haggie said government is looking to address gaps in the current legislation and to adopt recent best practices from other jurisdictions.
“I encourage everyone to take part. I look forward to hearing their views on public health and what they would like to see included before we introduce the new legislation in the House of Assembly this spring.”
People interested in taking part can do so at www.engagenl.ca.
Those who are unable to complete the online questionnaire may request a written copy by calling (709) 729-0724. Written submissions may also be sent through regular mail to the department.
The deadline for responses is March 19.
The provincial government will also hold a targeted stakeholder meeting later this month.