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"None of us are superhuman," says PHAC president as she steps down from the role

Last Updated Sep 18, 2020 at 4:24 pm EDT

OTTAWA — The president of the Public Health Agency of Canada is stepping down from her role as the country heads into the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tina Namiesniowski says in a letter to staff today that after six months of responding to the crisis, “none of us are superhuman” and that she needs to take a break.

She says she does not want to leave the federal public health agency without leadership at such a crucial time and so she is stepping aside so that someone else can take over.

She also thanks Canada’s chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, for being a “rock” and says they’ve made “an exceptional team.”

A Health Canada spokesman says a replacement for Namiesniowski, who had only been in the role since May 2019, will be announced next week.

Namiesniowski says she will help with the transition and then take some time to spend with her husband, children and aging father as she thinks about what comes next.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published September 18, 2020.

The Canadian Press