The Public Health Research, Education and Development (PHRED) program, and its predecessor, the Teaching Health Unit (THU) program, played important roles in advancing knowledge and its application across the public health community. Following on the work of the THUs, PHRED offered a systematic and rigorous way to look at the public health system and affect change within it. As a coordinating body that collected information and analyzed its effectiveness, PHRED was the foundation for evidence-informed decision-making in public health.
The THU program began supporting public health practitioners in training and practice in 1983. Six public health programs were designated as teaching health units, including Hamilton Public Health (1983); Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Health Unit (1990); Middlesex-London Health Unit (1990); Ottawa Public Health (1983); Sudbury & District Health Unit (1989); and Toronto Public Health (1991). East York (1989) and North York (1990) subsequently amalgamated with Toronto. In 1996, the program was renamed the Public Health Research, Education & Development Program (PHRED) to more clearly reflect its dual mandate of applied public health research and postsecondary student education. By 2001, five sites remained: Hamilton, Kingston, Middlesex-London, Ottawa and Sudbury.
By 2006, the Capacity Review Committee and the Agency Implementation Task Force reports included recommendations that PHRED should transition to the newly formed Ontario Agency for Health Protection and Promotion (OAHPP). In 2007, the Knowledge to Action (K2A) report proposed a regional model to build a sustainable system for workforce development, applied research and knowledge exchange.
In December 2009, the Government of Ontario approved the transfer of the provincial funding of the PHRED program functions to OAHPP. In 2010, OAHPP consulted extensively with partners in order to inform the renewal and redesign of the PHRED program into a new model. The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, Ministry of Health Promotion, OAHPP and other partners worked together, building on existing capacity and skills, to create a leading edge best practices infrastructure to actively engage local and regional practitioners and managers in the delivery and ongoing development of public health.
In January 2011, the provincial share of funding for the former PHRED program was transferred to Public Health Ontario. One element of PHO’s mandate to preserve the PHRED program’s legacy is to preserve and make publicly available all PHRED documents and publications. These documents can be searched and accessed on this page, using the search functions below.
To sort by date of publication, click on Date of Publication. To sort alphabetically by title click on Title. To sort by Document Type click on Document Type.