Public Health

About Toronto Public Health

Our Role - Who we are

Toronto Public Health (TPH) reports to the Board of Health and is responsible for the health and well being of all 2.8 million residents. TPH has focused on protecting and promoting the health of Toronto residents since 1883 by:

  • Preventing the spread of disease, promoting healthy living and advocating for conditions that improve health for Toronto residents
  • Using surveillance to monitor the health status of the population in order to respond to on-going and emerging health needs
  • Developing and implementing public policy and practices that enhance the health of individuals, communities and the entire city

Our Mission and Vision

TPH strives to reduce health inequities and improve the health of the whole population.

A Healthy City for All, Toronto Public Health Strategic Plan provides more information on what guides our work.

Programs and Services

TPH offers services to protect the citizens of Toronto against health hazards, diseases and educates the public on how to maintain, promote and improve overall health.

The Ontario Public Health Standards (OPHS) and Protocols by the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care establish the minimum requirements for fundamental public health programs and services which include assessment and surveillance, health promotion and policy development, disease and injury prevention, and health protection.

Leadership and Governance

The Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act requires Boards of Health to provide or ensure provision of a minimum level of public health programs and services in specified areas.

In the City of Toronto the Board of Health determines and sets public health policy and advises City Council on a broad range of health issues. The Medical Officer of Health for the City of Toronto, Dr. David McKeown, is the Executive Officer of the Board.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the monthly Board of Health meetings.

Emergency Preparedness

Toronto Public Health has an Emergency Planning and Preparedness (EPP) team that works to make sure the organization is prepared to deal with emergencies, like pandemic influenza and extreme heat situations. We also provide support to those coping with an emergency or crisis.

EPP develops and maintains emergency plans, provides staff training and participates in networks, partnerships and public education related to emergency management. We work with community, municipal and provincial partners to ensure an effective, coordinated response to emergencies in Toronto. For more information about City of Toronto emergency preparedness, please visit the Office of Emergency Management.

We are prepared. Are you? For more information about preparing yourself and your family for emergencies, please see the Get Emergency Ready booklet (PDF).