Canadians are paying close attention to the progress being made in the fight against COVID-19. While people are likely very familiar with the country's Chief Public Health Officer at this point, they may think that one of the roles of Dr. Tam is vaccine approval. However, she is not actually part of that process.\nShe has many other roles in the realm of public health, most of which involve communicating with people within her agency as well as Canadians. Her qualifications for being part of the fight against the pandemic speak for themselves, and although she is not directly involved in vaccine approval, the Public Health Agency still plays a role.\nEditor's Choice: Canada's New Privacy Law Could Include $25 Million Fines For Rule-Breaking Companies\n\nWhat are Dr. Tam's job duties?\nAs Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Tam's role is one that encompasses many different responsibilities.\nCommunication is a huge part of her position, as she regularly provides advice and consultation to the minister of health and the president of the Public Health Agency of Canada. \nShe is also tasked with compiling an annual report on the nation's health so that it can be tabled in parliament.\nOne of her regular duties, and one that has been amplified much more this year, is speaking directly to Canadians and providing updates on health issues.\nIn addition, she gives direction to the medical professionals, scientists, and epidemiologists working at the PHAC in order to plan and respond to emergencies (for example, a global pandemic).\n\nWhat is her professional background?\nDr. Tam has been in her role with the government since June 26, 2017. Her expertise is in the fields of immunization, infectious disease, emergency preparedness and global health security.\nShe received her medical degree from the University of Nottingham and completed her paediatric residency at the University of Alberta, followed by a fellowship in paediatric infectious diseases at the University of British Columbia. \nDr. Tam has had over 55 peer-reviewed works published in professional journals, and is a graduate of the Canadian Field Epidemiology Program.\nPrior to her work during the COVID-19 pandemic, she also applied her expertise to outbreaks of SARS, H1N1, and ebola.\n\nWho approves vaccines in Canada?\nWhile the difference between Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada may not be immediately apparent, both have different roles to play.\nThe PHAC is involved in the vaccine process, but it is Health Canada that actually provides approval based on scientific and clinical evidence.\nIn conjunction with the Public Health Agency, it also monitors the quality of vaccines throughout the country, as well as their safety and effectiveness.\nIt is the job of the Public Health Agency to provide information about vaccines to the public and to fund a national active surveillance network that monitors "selected adverse events following immunization, vaccine failures, and selected infectious diseases that are or will be preventable through vaccination."