The Annual Health Promotion Ontario conference is a free virtual experience this year! This is a four-part webinar series on Health Promotion in a Global Pandemic was produced November 2020. This initiative is in collaboration with the Ontario Public Health Association. Health promotion leaders from across the province that represent a variety of professions presented on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their area of expertise. Each event features a panel of speakers.

Webinar 1: Kick-off Event – November 5th 2020, 12:00pm – 1:00pm
These professionals have advanced health promotion research and education, by navigating new careers during a global pandemic and creating strategies for improving wellness. During the networking kick-off event, viewers had a chance to engage with those new to the field as well as seasoned health professionals.

Webinar 2: The Shadow Pandemic – November 12th 12:00pm – 1:00pm
While the emphasis in recent months has been on the very real threat of the virus, mental health and gender-based violence are steadily increasing, exacerbated by the pandemic. These rising health issues (among others) are sometimes overlooked consequences of the pandemic. They are often referred to as the ‘shadow pandemic’, and deserve attention. This webinar highlights the importance of maintaining population-level, health promotion interventions in combination with other public health services.

Webinar 3: How to Communicate Changing Public Health Agendas during a Pandemic – November 19th 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Every day the news and research presents new findings and regulations. Health Promotion professionals synthesize large amounts of complex information and efficiently relay this back to the public. Throughout the pandemic, the evidence has been constantly changing, which has made effective and clear communication challenging. Miscommunication often leads to misinformation. During this webinar, professionals discuss Health Promotion’s role in balancing the need for scientific integrity and public safety while effectively providing clear, widely understood messaging. They play a crucial role in health promotion, harm reduction, as well as instilling hope during times of uncertainty.

Webinar 4: Addressing Inequities during a Pandemic – November 26th 12:00pm – 1:00pm
During a state of global pandemic, health promotion plays an important role in ensuring equitable access to care, information, resources and services. The collection of race-based data in Ontario has highlighted the unequal distribution of COVID-19 in the public. Other populations such as low income and homeless and transient individuals, are also at greater risk of contracting COVID-19, experiencing worse health effects, losing their jobs, and having challenges accessing care.