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CIPHI Series: Three key things all public health inspectors should know before inspecting small drinking water systems.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017 12:00 pm to 01:00 pm
Venue: 480 University Ave. Suite 300, Toronto, ON M5G 1V2 Boardroom 345
Environmental and Occupational Health
City: Toronto
Type: Seminar
Format: In Person; Webinar
Note: This is an open invitation, and may be forwarded to interested parties.
In Ontario approximately 20% of the population gets their drinking water from a non-municipal drinking water source; these include small drinking water systems (SDWSs). The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care oversees the systems and they are inspected by public health inspectors. SDWSs are particularly vulnerable to contamination and PHIs face unique challenges during inspections.. The challenges include:  fewer protective measures in place than larger systems,  the remote and isolated locations of many systems, the cost of operating a treatment system for a small number of consumers, poor access to operator training, and low retention of knowledgeable operators.
The topics addressed in this presentation will assist the PHI in identifying and prioritizing protection efforts and education opportunities fundamental to improving the safety of SDWS, including: outbreak trends, operator ability, training needs and factors related to SDWSs having positive E.coli test results.
Education Objectives:
  • Describe the characteristics that put SDWSs at greater risk for contamination
  • Identify the characteristics and behaviours of the SDWS operator that can influence the security of the water supply
  • Discuss the role PHIs can play in improving the safety of the water supply in SDWSs


Presenter: Wendy Pons


Wendy Pons is   a supervisor of the vector borne disease team at the Region of Peel.  She has also taught a number of public health related courses at Ryerson University and the University of Guelph over the last 10 years. 
Wendy became a certified public health inspector in 2005. She completed her Masters in Environmental Science and Management in 2008 and her PhD in Epidemiology in 2015.  She has been conducting research related to small drinking water systems for the past 10 years and has published various papers and book chapters on the subject.
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