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Public Health Ontario to oversee COVID science expert group

WATCH ABOVE: Dr. Peter Juni has guided Ontarians throughout the pandemic but has since decided to step down later this spring. He speaks about the province's journey though these past two years and what’s next for him.

Public Health Ontario is taking over operation of Ontario’s expert group of COVID-19 pandemic advisers.

The agency announced Thursday it would host the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table on a permanent basis starting on April 4.

Read more: Ontario ‘staying the course’ on lifting COVID-19 mask mandate, health minister says

The Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto had previously overseen the group of independent scientists that provided research and modelling on the disease in Ontario.

Public Health Ontario says the group will still be made up of independent, non-partisan and volunteer experts and be transparent about its reporting and conflicts of interests.

Read more: Ontario opposition want government to share plans for handling rising COVID-19 cases

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It says the science table and Public Health Ontario will develop new terms of reference so the group is “sustainable over time” and can scale up if necessary in the event of future public health emergencies.

Adalsteinn Brown, dean of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, and Public Health Ontario vice-president Dr. Brian Schwartz will be co-chairs of the science table.

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