Glossary

Adverse Water Quality Incident (AWQI: Adverse observation)
Any event other than an adverse test result that indicates that the drinking water system may not be supplying safe water (e.g. an ultra-violet (UV) light in alarm)
Adverse Water Quality Incident (AWQI: Adverse test result)
The result of any water sample that exceeds any standard prescribed by Schedule 1, 2 or 3 of the Ontario Drinking Water Quality Standards, O. Reg. 169/03 (e.g. presence of total coliform or E. coli in a Small Drinking Water System drinking water supply).
Blood-borne Exposure
Blood or body fluid contact with mucous membrane (eyes, nose, mouth), or with broken skin (open cut, wound), or a needle stick injury from a sharp object contaminated with blood or body fluid.
Blood-borne Infection
Infection that spreads through contaminated blood or other body fluids (e.g. HIV, Hepatitis B virus, or Hepatitis C virus).
Building – Recreational Camp
Any building, vehicle or other structure or premises used or intended to be used for accommodation of camp staff members or campers or for the storage, preparation or serving of food.
Charge
Legal actions used by the Durham Region Health Department to ensure establishments meet the standard requirements set out in associated Acts, Regulations or By-laws. Actions may include the issuance of an Offence Notice (tickets) or Summons.
Charge - Offence Notice
A notice (ticket) that has a set fine associated with infractions under public health Acts, Regulations and/or By-laws.
Charge - Summons
A notice to appear before the Ontario Court of Justice regarding charges for infractions related to public health Acts, Regulations and/or By-laws.
Check&GO! – Durham Notice of Inspection
Sign posted at licensed child care centres, recreational water facilities and small drinking water systems directing the public to access health inspection results and legal activity information onsite or online at Durham.ca/checkandgo
Check&GO! Disclosure Program
Durham Region Health Department’s disclosure program which provides health inspection results and legal activity information for the following programs; Dine Safe (Food Safety), Know Before You Go (Personal Service Settings), licensed child care centres, recreational water facilities and small drinking water systems.
Cleaning
Physical removal of dirt, organic matter and most germs from surfaces usually done using water, detergent and friction.
Contact Time
Time required for the disinfectant to be left wet on the surface to kill germs.
Convicted
An outcome of a charge in which an individual or business has either plead guilty or has been found guilty. The outcome may include fines and/or court orders, or alternative sentencing.
Cross-contamination
The transfer of an infectious agent from contaminated sources to a non-contaminated source.
Directive
A document that outlines the operational requirements that must be carried out by the owner/operator of a small drinking water system. This document is issued in accordance with section 7 of Ontario Regulation 319/08 (Small Drinking Water Systems). A directive is issued to an owner/operator on completion of a site-specific risk assessment or other inspection process conducted by a Public Health Inspector.
Disinfection
Process that destroys most disease-causing germs that remain on surfaces.
Drinking Water Advisory (DWA) – Boil Water Advisory
Issued by the Health Department when unacceptable levels of total coliforms and/or E. coli are identified in a drinking water supply. Boiling of the water is required to render the water safe to use. An alternate supply of potable water may also be recommended (e.g. bottled water) on a temporary basis.
Drinking Water Advisory (DWA) – Health Information
Issued by the Health Department to inform specific community users of an exceedance (e.g. sodium, nitrates) and the recommended measures to be taken to reduce exposure and mitigate the risk to human health.
Durham DineSafe Inspection Summary Sign
The Green (PASS), Yellow (CONDITIONAL PASS) or Red (CLOSED) coloured sign issued and posted by a Public Health Inspector at a food establishment after their inspection.
Establishment (as defined by disclosure by-law 45-2018)
Any buildings, outdoor lands, and/or public spaces where operations and activities occur as defined in section 2 of by-law 45-2018 (e.g., public spas, recreational water facilities, recreational camps, licensed child care settings, small drinking water systems).
Follow-up Inspection
Follow-up visits to an establishment to verify that infractions have been corrected from a previous inspection or follow-up visits to verify that an Order of a Public Health Inspector is in continuous compliance.
Food
All ingredients used in food items and beverages (including ice) for consumption.
Food Establishment
Any place where food is manufactured, processed, stored, handled, displayed, distributed, transported, sold or offered for sale to the public.
Food Handler
An employee who handles or comes into contact with any utensil or food during its preparation, processing, packaging, service, storage or transportation.
Food Premises Regulation
Food Premises Regulation under the Health Protection and Promotion Act, sets out the standards that food establishments must meet. These standards relate to food handling, training, sanitation, dishwashing, and personal cleanliness practices.
Food-borne Illness
Also known as “food poisoning”, happens when people eat or drink food contaminated by bacteria, parasites, viruses or chemicals. Salmonella and E.coli are two common types of bacteria that cause food-borne illness.
Hazardous Food
Any food that can support the growth of disease causing organisms. Examples include food(s) with high levels of protein, moisture and neutral acidity (meats, dairy products, rice, seafood and poultry).
Health Hazard
Is defined by the Health Protection and Promotion Act, as “A condition of a premises, a substance, thing, plant, or animal other than man, or a solid, liquid, gas, or combination of any of them, that has or that is likely to have an adverse effect on the health of any person.”
Health Protection and Promotion Act Order
The Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act, outlines the organization and delivery of public health programs and services, the prevention of the spread of disease and the protection and promotion of the health of the people of Ontario. Orders are issued by the Durham Region Health Department to ensure health hazards are eliminated immediately and ensure establishments meet the requirements set out in associated regulations.
Infection prevention and control (IPAC) lapse
A failure to follow IPAC practices resulting in a risk of transmission of infectious diseases to clients, attendees or staff through exposure to blood, body fluids, secretions, excretions, mucous membranes, non-intact skin, or contaminated equipment and soiled items.
Infraction
Failure to meet the minimum standard requirements set out in associated Acts, Regulations or By-laws. The term “infraction” may also be called “violation”, “contravention”, or “item of non-compliance”.
Infraction (Food Establishments) - Critical infraction(s)
Items that may lead to food-borne illness e.g. improper hot/cold holding temperatures, cross-contamination of food, in adequate/no hand washing, etc.
Infraction (Food Establishments) - Non-critical infraction(s)
Items that are not likely to lead to food-borne illness e.g. lack of hair restraints for food handlers, repair/cleaning of floors, walls, non-food contact surfaces, etc.
Infraction (Personal Services Settings) - Critical infraction(s)
Items that may lead to transmission of blood-borne and other types of infection (e.g. improper cleaning, disinfection and or sterilization, reuse of single-use items, appropriate records/packaging not maintained, inadequate/no hand washing, etc.).
Infraction (Personal Services Settings) - Non-critical infraction(s)
Items that are not likely to lead to transmission of blood-borne infection (e.g. floors, walls and other structural surfaces or equipment not in good repair, personal items stored with client items, etc.).
Inspection Report
An inspection report that a Public Health Inspector provides to the operator noting the infractions and the corrective measures.
Invasive service
Any service that breaks/penetrates the skin (e.g. extractions, microneedling, microblading, piercing, tattooing, etc.)
Know Before You Go Durham Disclosure
Inspection disclosure program that gives the public quick and easy access to the inspection results of Personal Service Settings to reduce the risk of transmission of blood-borne infections.
Know Before You Go Durham Inspection Summary Sign
The Green (PASS), Yellow (CONDITIONAL PASS) or Red (CLOSED) coloured sign issued and posted by a Public Health Inspector at a Personal Service Settings after their inspection.
Legal Activity
Legal actions used by the Durham Region Health Department to ensure establishments meet the minimum standards of applicable acts, regulations, guidelines and by-laws. Actions may include charges (tickets or summons), advisories and orders made under the Health Protection and Promotion Act.
Licensed child care setting
A premises operated by a person licensed under the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014.
Ontario’s Infection Prevention and Control Best Practices for Personal Services Settings, MOHLTC
Outlines the minimum standards that Personal Services Settings must meet. These standards relate to appropriate infection prevention and control practices including cleaning and disinfection and/or sterilization of equipment, proper client record keeping, maintaining a sanitary service area, dealing with blood and body fluid exposure, and proper hand hygiene practices.
Owner/ Operator
A person who has responsibility for and/or control over activities in an establishment to ensure compliance with applicable legislation and directives.
Owner/ Operator - Personal Services Settings
Any person or persons who own, occupy, manage, control, govern or has responsibility for and control over the activity carried on or within a defined Personal Services Settings. It is recognized that there may be more than one operator of a defined Personal Services Settings.
Owner/Operator – Recreational Camp
A person who owns or operates the camp, whether personally or by agents.
Pathogen
A microorganism that causes disease in humans. Microscopic organisms include bacteria, viruses and protozoa.
Pending (Legal Activity)
Awaiting the legal outcome of a charge on an individual or a business. This may result in a conviction, or charges may be withdrawn or dismissed.
Personal Services Setting & Personal Services
Premises where any service offered, there is a risk of exposure to blood (e.g. hairdressing and barber shops, tattoo and body piercing studios, electrolysis, and various aesthetic services), including home-based and mobile premises.
Personal Services Settings Regulation
The Ontario Personal Services Settings Regulation, is the legislation outlining the personal services requirements that personal services settings establishments in Ontario must meet.
Public Health Inspector
Trained and certified professionals who are required to assess and monitor health and safety hazards in the community. They are Provincial Offences Officers who enforce laws relating to public health issues (e.g. food safety, safe water, infection control and prevention, etc.) acting under the direction of the Medical Officer of Health.
Public Pools – Class A
Class “A” pools include pools: to which the general public is admitted; operated in part or as part of an program of an educational, instructional, physical fitness or athletic facility that receives public funding; located on the premises of a recreational camp.
Public Pools – Class B
Class “B” pools include pools: operated on the premises of an apartment building or single-family private homes that contains 6 or more units or a mobile home park; operated on the premises of a hotel or campground; operated in conjunction with a club, a condominium or co-operative community property that contains 6 or more units; operated in conjunction with a child care centre, a day camp or an establishment or facility for the care or treatment of persons who have special needs, for the use of those persons and their visitors; neither a Class A pool, nor exempt from the provisions of this Regulation.
Public Pools – Class C facilities
Class C facilities include any of the following: public wading pools, public splash pads and water slide receiving basins.
Public Pools Regulation
The Public Pools Regulation under the Health Protection and Promotion Act, sets out the standards that public pool, spa and splash pad operators must meet. These standards relate to operation and maintenance, filtration systems, water chemistry and all relevant safety and emergency procedures.
Public Spa
A hydro-massage pool containing an artificial body of water that is intended primarily for therapeutic or recreational use, that is not drained, cleaned or refilled before use by each individual and that utilizes hydro-jet circulation, air induction bubbles, current flow or a combination of them over the majority of the pool area.
Recreational Camp
A camp for recreational activities on a site in which sleeping and eating facilities are provided for temporary occupancy, with or without charge, for five or more persons who are under eighteen years of age or persons who have special needs.
Re-Inspection
Follow-up visits to an establishment to verify that infractions have been corrected from a previous inspection or follow-up visits to verify that an Order of a Public Health Inspector is in continuous compliance.
Risk Categorization - Small Drinking Water Systems
A Risk Categorization tool developed by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) is used by Public Health Inspectors to conduct site-specific risk assessments of small drinking water systems. The Risk Categorization tool assesses all parts of a SDWS from source water to water available at the tap to users by applying the steps of a multi- barrier approach to protect drinking water. SDWS are assigned one of the following risk categories for the system as a whole: High = Significant level of risk (Inspected once every 2 years); Moderate = Medium level of risk (Inspected once every 4 years); Low = Negligible level of risk (Inspected once every 4 years).
Routine (Compliance Inspection)
An inspection as required by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC). The number of visits is based on the outcome of the risk assessment for food establishment and the Ontario Public Health Standards and Protocols for all other facilities. Public Health Inspectors visit establishments to inspect the physical environment, equipment and observe the practices of food handlers.
Sanitize
The treatment of food contact surfaces by a chemical or temperature that decreases the number of disease causing organisms.
Sharps
Any item that may penetrate the skin (e.g. needles, blades, lancets, razors, etc.).
Significant compliance
There are no or only a few non-critical infractions observed which are unlikely to result in the spread of infection.
Significant non-compliance
The number and/or the type of infractions observed that have the potential for the spread of infection.
Single-use/disposable Item
Any item that is designed to be used once and then discarded as it cannot be adequately cleaned and disinfected or sterilized.
Small Drinking Water System
If your business or premises makes drinking water available to the public and you do not get your drinking water from a municipal drinking water system, you may be an owner or operator of a small drinking water system. Examples of SDWS operations include food establishments, bed and breakfast establishments, golf courses, ski resorts and campgrounds with a water supply.
Small Drinking Water System Regulation
The Small Drinking Water Systems Regulation (O. Reg. 319/08) under the Health Protection and Promotion Act, sets out the standards and requirements that owner/operators must meet. Owner/operators must also meet the operational requirements identified in the site- specific Directive issued for the SDWS.
Sterilization
The process of destroying all microorganisms including viruses, bacteria, fungi and bacterial spores. All items that pierce or penetrate the skin and in some cases, those that hold sterile items must be sterile.