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Ontario Appoints Special Advisor to Develop Health Data Platform and Creates Premier’s Council on Equality of Opportunity

Published on
June 5, 2020

Ontario Health Data Platform

Yesterday, the Ontario government appointed Dr. Jane Philpot as the special advisor to the new Ontario Health Data Platform. She will help support the design and implementation of this platform which will be used by health researchers and health system partners to better detect, plan and respond to COVID-19. In consultation with the Ontario Privacy Commissioner, the Ontario Health Data Platform is being developed to provide secure access to anonymized health data that is better and more consistent. The platform will support projects from the Ontario COVID-19 Rapid Research Fund and will help researchers and clinical decision-makers to analyze the COVID-19 outbreak (detection, spread, prevention and treatment measures), as well as health system planning and responsiveness.

Dr. Philpott will also chair the Joint Minister’s Roundtable. As chair, she will share the recommendations with the Minister of Health and President of the Treasury Board. The roundtable will be made up of individuals from public health, researchers, and privacy and clinical experts. It will help to inform the development of the platform.

Researchers will be able to access the platform beginning in July 2020.

Premier’s Council on Equality of Opportunity

The Ontario government also announced the creation of the Premier’s Council on Equality of Opportunity. The Council will have a dual role: to provide advice on how young people can overcome social and economic barriers and achieve success and to provide advice on the long-term actions that can support youth and help them recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the barriers and economic challenges youth face.

The Council will be chaired by Jamil Jivani, Ontario’s Advocate for Community Opportunities. The council will have a vice-chair and up to 18 additional members. The members will be intergenerational (youth between the ages of 18-29 and adults) and will have cross-sector expertise (community organizations, not-for-profit, businesses, education and government services). Individuals interested in joining the council are invited to apply to the Public Appointments Secretariat by Thursday, June 18, 2020.

The Ontario government also announced $1.5 million in funding to organizations that support Black families and youth. The government recognizes that the Black communities have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and this funding will provide urgent support.


Consult the Sussex COVID-19 Guide for information on supports made available across the Federal, Provincial and Municipal Governments.

Let Sussex help connect you with the right people in government to help your organization get through these extraordinary times and navigate COVID-19 support programs.

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