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Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response

Canadians look to their governments for protection from health risks. They expect their governments to be ready to deal with the possible health risks from:

  • natural events and disasters such as floods, earthquakes, fires and highly dangerous infectious diseases; and
  • accidents or criminal and terrorist acts involving explosives, chemicals, radioactive substances or biological threats.

All levels of government in Canada help to protect the health of Canadians from these threats as part of their efforts to promote health and prevent disease. Local, provincial and territorial authorities do much of that work with federal government support from the Public Health Agency of Canada's Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response (CEPR).

The Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response is Canada's central coordinating point for public health security issues. Among its many responsibilities, CEPR:

  • develops and maintains national emergency response plans for the Public Health Agency of Canada and Health Canada;
  • monitors outbreaks and global disease events;
  • assesses public health risks during emergencies;
  • contributes to keeping Canada's health and emergency policies in line with threats to public health security and general security for Canadians in collaboration with other federal and international health and security agencies;
  • is responsible for the important federal public health rules governing laboratory safety and security, quarantine and similar issues; and
  • is the health authority in the Government of Canada on bioterrorism, emergency health services and emergency response.

The CEPR Structure

To achieve its many different goals, the Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response is organized into specialized offices. Each office has specific responsibilities. The doctors, nurses, scientists and other professionals and support staff across CEPR have the expertise to meet Canada's public health security priorities.

The Centre's Office of the Director General leads and coordinates CEPR operations by providing: