feature story

Boards of Health discussions between neighbouring Health Units regarding the potential for voluntary merger now complete

The Boards of Health for Lambton Public Health (LPH) and Chatham-Kent Public Health (CKPH) have completed a review for a potential voluntary merger between their respective health units.

Findings from an independent consulting firm, Roving Capacity, were presented to both Boards of Health during their respective February 2024 Board meetings. While both Boards of Health indicated that a merger between Chatham-Kent Public Health and Lambton Public Health would be a merger of equals, the study found no compelling reason for the two health units to undertake a merger at this time. As such, both Boards of Health have decided to continue as independent health units embedded within their municipalities.  

Participating in this process provided an opportunity for both health units to review their organizations, the relationships they have with each other, and the benefits of being part of their municipalities. Going forward, both Boards of Health have directed administration to explore potential partnerships and increased collaboration between the two health units.

“We are committed to prioritizing the health needs of the local communities we serve”, said Kevin Marriott, Lambton County Warden, and Chair of the Lambton Board of Health. “We value the work of our municipally integrated public health units. Through this review process, we have affirmed a great deal about our shared communities of interest with Chatham-Kent and will continue to advocate for local connectedness and a visible presence in our communities.”

“Our vision is for everyone in Chatham-Kent to have the opportunity to reach optimal health and a high quality of life. We do this by working with the community to deliver evidence informed, equity-focused programs and services that protect and promote the health of all residents,” said Brock McGregor, Chair for the Chatham-Kent Board of Health, “while we have made the decision not to move forward with a merger at this time, the review has demonstrated the desire for ongoing partnership and collaboration with Lambton Public Health as we support each other to reach the vision for our communities.”

Voluntary mergers are just one component of the Ministry of Health’s Strengthening Public Health Plan. During the coming year, the Ministry will review and update the Ontario Public Health Standards and undertake a review of the current funding formula.

For more information about the upcoming provincial changes to the public health system, please see the following resources:

Ontario Investing in a Stronger Public Health Sector, Ministry of Health

Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care, Ministry of Health

Strengthening Public Health, Outcomes and Objectives to Support Voluntary Mergers, Ministry of Health


Please contact:

Lambton Public Health

Chatham-Kent Public Health
Eric Labadie
Manager, Corporate Communications
Municipality of Chatham-Kent519-784-0370