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Porcupine Health Unit Programs and Services

The response to the COVID-19 pandemic has meant many changes. The Porcupine Health Unit plays a significant role in protecting the health and well-being of our communities during the pandemic. As a result, the health unit has had to reduce many programs and services to focus on COVID-19. We are resuming some of our services, but how we deliver them looks different.


Status of programs and services 

Current as of Friday, May 13, 2022

We continue to monitor the situation in our area and across the province to re-assess the delivery of programs and services and will update this page as required.

Check with your local health unit office as not all services are available in each community. Staff is available to answer your questions and to help. Call us at 1-800-461-1818 or your local office to schedule an appointment or to get further information.

Active services: Your Health

  • Dental services
    • In-person appointments available for dental screening, cleaning, and fluoride application
    • Fluoride Varnish Program offered to CDSSAB licensed childcare centres and Early ON Centres throughout the district
    • Enrolment in the Healthy Smiles Ontario and the Ontario Seniors Dental Care Program when eligibility criteria is met (by telephone)
    • Help in finding a dental provider (by telephone)
  • Immunization Clinics (non-COVID-19)
    • Primary series for babies
    • Adults without primary care provider for Pneumovax, Tetanus and Shingrix
    • Pregnant women for Tdap
    • School immunization for overdue students
    • Grade 7 immunizations
    • Yellow fever vaccinations
  • Harm reduction services
    • Street outreach
    • Naloxone available for pick-up
    • Walk-in harm reduction clinic
    • Community clean-up kits available for pick-up
  • Sexual health clinic
    • By appointment only

Active services: Your Family

  • Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program
    • Virtual visits
    • Vouchers provided by mail or pick-up
  • Healthy Babies Healthy Children Program
  • Infant Feeding
    • Telephone support
    • Breastfeeding clinic
  • Infant Hearing Program
    • In-person appointments for infants under 2 months of age
  • Preschool Speech and Language
    • Virtual and in-person appointments for assessment and therapy sessions
    • Now accepting new clients

Active services: Your Community

  • Animal bite exposure
    • Ongoing as reported
  • Food handling courses
    • Online course
    • Single-person exams can be completed at the PHU
  • Food premise inspections
    • Inspections ongoing
  • Land control
    • Permits are being provided and inspections are being done weather permitting
  • Personal Service Settings
    • Inspections ongoing
  • Private well water testing
    • Testing kits available for pick-up; Public Health Ontario lab is accepting samples
  • Recreational water testing (e.g., pools, beaches)
    • Inspections and sampling
  • Tobacco/vape inspections
    • Completed on demand

The following services have been paused

  • Car seat inspections
  • Dental services: School Screening Program
  • Immunization clinics for:
    • Travellers (excluding Yellow Fever vaccinations)
  • In-person Food Handler Courses
  • Vision Services: Senior Kindergarten Vision Screening Program

What to expect if you have an appointment at our offices

Before coming to the health unit office (this can be when scheduling an appointment) all clients will go through an active screening.

If the client screens positive

  • The appointment will be rescheduled more than 10 days after the onset of symptoms.
  • Staff will provide the number for the local assessment centre if available or offer to arrange testing, ensure safe arrangements for travel to get tested, and provide instructions on how to self-isolate.
  • Clients with severe symptoms will be directed to the emergency department.

If the client screens negative

  • The scheduled appointment can occur.
  • If appropriate, health teaching will occur over the phone, prior to the appointment to limit the amount of face-to-face time.
  • The appointment date and time will be confirmed.
  • Any personal health information (e.g., phone number, health care number) may be confirmed over the phone prior to the appointment.

When arriving at the health unit office

  • As of March 21st, all visitors entering the Porcupine Health Unit must wear a mask. Non-medical masks must be worn to enter the building. At reception, clients will be asked to sanitize their hands and will be provided with a medical mask to wear during the appointment. Exemptions include children under two years, and individuals who have difficulty breathing, communication difficulties, or those who cannot remove their masks without assistance.
  • Clients will undergo active screening for COVID-19. If positive, the steps as listed above will be followed. If negative, the appointment will take place.
  • Only 1 person is permitted to the appointment except for children and those with disabilities.