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The BC Observatory for Population and Public Health (BCOPPH) was established in response to a recommendation of the Population and Public Health Surveillance Plan for BC.

Its primary purpose is to provide collaborative leadership in the development of provincial and regional surveillance capacity with respect to non-communicable diseases, injuries, and risk and protective factors. This includes provision of support to Chief Medical Health Officers in Regional Health Authorities to systematically report on health status of their populations, as required by the Public Health Act.

It is envisioned that the Observatory will provide ongoing support to provincial and regional surveillance programs, enhance provincial capacity and coordination of activities, and provide partner organizations with an opportunity to set collaborative priorities and develop joint work plans.

Key functions of the Observatory will include:

  • Generating population health situation analyses, surveillance and intelligence reports
  • Knowledge sharing and information dissemination
  • A primary commitment to working with local or regional partners to support evidence-based decision-making
  • Collaborating with regional, national and international partners

The Observatory is in its early start-up phase.  It is intended that the Observatory undertake its work in a collaborative manner, based on a hub and spoke model.  There will be two integrated components: core resources situated at the BCCDC (the hub), and epidemiology resources within the Regional Health Authorities (the spokes). Currently, the organizational structure of both the hub and spokes are under development. The hub is expected to eventually include project management expertise and administrative support, along with data analytic support such as epidemiologists, biostatisticians and knowledge translation specialists.

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