According to a report issued by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, announced another measure to address the H1N1 flu virus.
The report affirmed that the Government of Canada will fund a national influenza research network focused on pandemic vaccine evaluation.
The network purports to strengthen Canada’s capacity to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of a pandemic influenza vaccine and vaccination programs.
The report went on to say the network was created through a partnership between the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). It will be led by Dr. Scott Halperin, Director of the Canadian Centre for Vaccinology in Halifax. It will link over 80 scientists from 30 research and public health institutions across Canada.
"The development and delivery of an effective influenza vaccine are critical to addressing the H1N1 flu virus, said Minister Aglukkaq in a press release. This research network will help ensure that Canadians have a safe vaccine that can be provided quickly."
According to the report, the network purports to provide a pan-Canadian coordinating mechanism for conducting applied public health research that will help governments and the public health community prepare for and respond to an influenza pandemic.
Network scientists reportedly will be able to test methodologies for the performance of rapid clinical trials, assess the safety and immunogenicity of a novel pandemic influenza vaccine, provide population-based estimates of vaccine safety and effectiveness, and measure vaccine coverage facilitate the rapid implementation of pandemic influenza vaccine programs
"Canada is fortunate to have a strong community of internationally-recognized infectious disease researchers," Dr. Alain Beaudet, President of CIHR s aid in a press release.
Dr. David Butler Jones, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer said in a press release that supporting the initiative in partnership with CIHR provides an “ideal mechanism to learn more about influenza in Canada and how to improve our responses to current and future outbreaks."
The report went on to say the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) is the main Government of Canada agency responsible for public health in Canada. Its activities focus on preventing chronic diseases, like cancer and heart disease, preventing injuries and responding to public health emergencies and infectious disease outbreaks.