Canada has experienced multiple infectious disease outbreaks in the 21st. century. The outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2003, followed by H1N1 in 2009, signalled that outbreaks of infectious diseases around the world were increasing in frequency. These outbreaks prompted Canada to acknowledge shortcomings in its broader public health system, ultimately resulting in increased public health funding, as well as updated public health policies and infrastructure. In early 2020, Canada’s pandemic preparedness was tested with the first global pandemic since the 1918 influenza outbreak, COVID-19 (Liu et al., 2020). Problems were revealed with Canada’s information management systems, public health surveillance, and border control measures. Canada was not prepared for a large-scale outbreak and the issues highlighted require national solutions. This capstone begins with a summary of the themes and recommendations stemming from the reviews of the SARS and H1N1 outbreaks. The COVID-19 pandemic is then analyzed, starting with countries with successful response measures. Issues with Canada’s surveillance measures are highlighted, looking specifically at the country’s information management frameworks and the Global Public Health Intelligence Network (GPHIN). Gaps in Canada’s border control measures during COVID-19 and their implications are examined. This paper then explores the relationship between public health and national security, ultimately suggesting how the fusion would benefit Canada’s pandemic preparedness. Lastly, five recommendations are given that aim to improve Canada’s outbreak prevention and mitigating measures.
Babin, B. (2021). Identify, Respond, Neutralize: Recommendations for Canada’s Post-COVID-19 Framework (Unpublished master's project). University of Calgary, Calgary, AB.